Our Stories
MIAI the story so far…

In 2011
, MIAI's founder, Helen Hai, established a shoe factory in Ethiopia as Vice President of Huajian, a Chinese manufacturer. The first and successful factory began exporting shoes to US retailers within 3 months of production. Within 6 months, Helen and Huajian effectively doubled Ethiopia's export revenue in the shoe sector. After 2 years production, the company employed over 3,500 Ethiopian workers by producing 2 million shoes annually. Because of this success, Huajian is currently establishing a USD2 billion investment in Ethiopia's Bole Economic Zone that aims to create 100,000 jobs for the local community.

In 2013, former Chief Economist of the World Bank, Dr. Justin Yifu Lin, approached Helen Hai and encourage her to promote Huajian as not just a business case but a development model. In the same year, Helen was invited by Ethiopia's Prime Minister, Mr. Hailemariam Desalegn, to join his first official visit to China. During the trip, Mr. Desalegn expressed his appreciation on Huajian's contribution to the local economy and community However, in order to really develop Ethiopia country, ‘we need thousands of companies like Huajian’. After this conversation, the ‘Made in Africa Initiative’ was born.

In 2014, MIAI successfully assisted Ethiopian government in restructuring the industrialization regime and investment incentives to promote the competitiveness for the country. With advices from MIAI, three industrial parks emerged progressively. The latest textile industrial park in Hawassa was estimated to generate USD 1 billion for export value and create more than 50,000 jobs for local employment. In 2016, MIAI facilitated four business giants from Chinese  textile manufacturing sector  into Ethiopia as anchor investors, and remarkably brought more than USD 1.5 billion  direct investment.

In 2015, MIAI  partnered with another local investorto established a successful garment factory in Rwanda, proving the success of this model across countries. The factory employs nearly 2000 Rwandan workers. Rwanda government is now actively working with MIAI to promote this methodology in national scale in order to enhance this prosperous industrialization atmosphere.

In 2015, MIAI signed MOU with UNDP China and FCSSC(Finance center for south-south cooperation). Under this collaboration, UNDP will support the Initiative in line with its pioneering concept and increasing efforts to improve China's South-South cooperation with global partners especially in Africa region. Shortly after that, three MOUs were signed between FCSSC and government of Djibouti, Nigeria and Senegal respectively, which all under immediate support from Made in Africa Initiative.

In 2016, Made in Africa Initiative has already conducted consultancy work on the National Industrial Planning, and Free Trade Zone and Industrial Park Implementation Plan for the government of Djibouti, and another industrial park project in Nigeriaby the end of 2016. In Senegal, MIAI also assisted the government to design and construct their first industrial park of the country.  

In 2017, MIAI was appointed as strategic consultant for both Rwanda and Uganda government on their national industrialization projects at various location.