Adanech Abiebie, Deputy Mayor of Addis Ababa City, speaks during the thanksgiving ceremony of the Meskel Square project in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on Feb. 14, 2021. (Xinhua/Michael Tewelde)
ADDIS ABABA, Feb. 14 (Xinhua) -- The Ethiopian government on Sunday hailed the progress of Chinese-contracted mega development project in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa.
This came in a thanksgiving event that was organized to acknowledge the professional excellence of Chinese and Ethiopian construction workers of the Meskel Square project, which is now close to completion at the heart of Addis Ababa by the Chinese construction giant, China Communications Construction Company (CCCC).
Adanech Abiebie, Deputy Mayor of Addis Ababa City, hailed the progress of the project, as she emphasized the "immense contribution" of Chinese and Ethiopian construction workers, who she said "are exerting their time and energy nonstop, day and night towards the successful completion of the project in a short construction time span."
According to Abiebie, the Meskel Square could be seen as a model development project for ongoing and upcoming similar mega projects in the capital and throughout the East African country.
"We have a number of mega-development projects that are already on the pipeline as well as upcoming others," the Deputy Mayor said, adding that the "great progress of the Meskel Square project, in terms of its quality and swift progress, could serve as a positive lesson to ongoing and future similar projects."
"The city administration would like to thank all those who contributed to the success of this important project," she added.
Meskel Square project sees the construction of state of the art integrated facilities, incorporating an underground parking lot enough to accommodate about 1,400 vehicles at once, six LED advertising screens, according to the Exhibition Center and Market Development Enterprise (ECMDE), which hosted the thanksgiving event.
Tilahun Tadesse, Chief Executive Officer of ECMDE, on his part said the project is expected to give Africa's political capital, Addis Ababa, a facelift while at the same time will generate revenue through higher land values and urban tourism, according to Tadesse.
Noting that the Meskel Square project has witnessed major progress milestones during the past close to eight months construction period, Tadesse singled out the contribution of Chinese and Ethiopian workers "working around the clock to realize the huge emphasis given to the project by the Ethiopian government."
The Meskel Square project is the latest addition to a number of mega-development projects that are underway across the capital, most of which are undertaken by Chinese companies, such as the 56kms riverside rehabilitation scheme dubbed "Beautifying Sheger."
Wei Qiangyu, Deputy General Manager of CCCC East Africa Branch, also said that the thanksgiving event, which coincided with the Chinese Lunar New Year, also acknowledged the professional brilliance of Chinese construction experts who are "working day and night" alongside their Ethiopian counterparts.
The East African country recently inaugurated a landmark recreational avenue, dubbed Friendship Square, which is also part of the grand "Beautifying Sheger Project" in Addis Ababa.
The Friendship Square project was also constructed by CCCC in a span of less than a year.
The "Beautifying Sheger" Project, along with a number of other mega projects, is a personal initiative of the Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, who envisions creating a clean and livable environment for the 5 million-plus residents of Addis Ababa, which also hosts the headquarters of the African Union (AU), the UN Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) as well as more than 100 diplomatic missions. Enditem