Ethiopia To Spend $270 Million on Roads
Ethiopia has set aside 8 billion Birr to construct new roads and upgrade dilapidated ones in 2009. Mr Samson Wondimu, public relations head of the Ethiopian Roads Authority said that Ethiopia has spent $3.6 billion over the past decade to build 101,359 km of asphalt and gravel roads.
Recognising the importance of road transport in supporting social and economic growth and in meeting poverty alleviation, the government has placed increased emphasis on improving the quality and size of road infrastructure. The development of Ethiopia’s road network was given top priority as a core component of its economic progress.
Ethiopia Ranked Second Best Destination for Investors in Africa
A new index launched by African Rainbow Consulting on 18th February 2009, indicates that Ethiopia is the second best destination in Africa for investment. The Star of Africa’s is a weighted index which ranks each of Africa’s 53 countries based on governance and social capital as well as Africa’s potential growth in energy, water (supply, sanitation and irrigation), internet and communications sectors.
African Rainbow Consulting provided intelligence briefings on doing business and investing in Africa. It is designed to help investors and entrepreneurs to establish which countries offer significant risk or opportunity for successful long-term investment. Africa has been experiencing an investment boom in recent years, though the current global financial crisis has slowed it down.
Commercial Bank of Ethiopia Obtains Record Profits
Despite the current global economic crisis, the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia (CBE) announced on 12th February 2009, that it has achieved record high profits amounting to over $10o million in the last six months alone.
CBE President Bekalu Zeleke said that the profit of $103 million secured by the bank during the reported period is an all time high unmatched in its history, since its establishment in 1942. President Bekalu added that CBE’s assets have also shown an accelerated growth over the last four years. Its assets, which were below $2 billion in 2006, have more than doubled to $5 billion.
The increase in the bank’s profit and assets is attributed to the nation’s steady economic growth in the past couple of years. CBE currently provides services to more than two million customers through its 205 branch offices in Ethiopia. It also has trading relations with 500 international banks.
Auerbach Grayson Eyeing Business in Ethiopia
Auerbach Grayson a large American company is undertaking survey studies with a view to investing in Ethiopia. Owner Jonathan Auerbach has indicated that he is attracted by the Ethiopian government’s range of investment policies and incentives. Ethiopia will be the company’s 121st investment destination.
Ethiopia to Trademark Two More Coffee Brands
Ethiopia plans to obtain trademark rights for two coffee brands, originating in its Limu and Lekempte regions, to ensure they are only sold by licensed distributors.
Ethiopia already has trademark rights with global companies for its finest coffee brands – the Yirgacheffe, Sidamo and Harar coffees – that are grown in the eponymous regions.
The Ethiopian Intellectual Property Rights Office (EIPRO) has embarked on efforts to secure trademark certificates for Limu and Lekempte during the 21st American Speciality
The trademarks will enhance the value of Ethiopian coffee to $8 per kilo compared with the present value of $2. Ethiopia exported 170,888 tonnes of coffee and earned $525.2 million during 2007/08 period compared with 176,390 tonnes and £424.2 million in 2006/07.
Ethiopia Oil Seed, Pulse & Spices Exports to Increase
Ethiopia aims to export more than 720,000 tonnes of oil seed, pulses and spices in 2009, earning the country some $715 million, a 94% increase on revenue from the previous year. Mussie Yacoub, president of the Ethiopian Oil Seeds, Pulses and Spices Exporters Association said that a bumper harvest combined with lower production in India gave Ethiopia the change to boost its market share.
Awards Given Out at the Farmer’s Festival
On the 11th February 2009 Ethiopia held its third Farmer’s Festival in Nazareth, at which awards were given to 500 ‘development heroes’ who were able to save from £400,000 to $1 million in cash. The awards were in recognition of their hard work in agricultural productivity of the country.
The President of Oromia Regional State, Abadula Gemeda, urged farmers to further enhance agricultural production and productivity in a bid to realise speedy and sustainable economic growth.
Cardiac Centre Opens in with Successful Surgery
The Children’s Heart Fund of Ethiopia officially opened its doors on 12th February 2009. Since the completion of the hospital one month ago, fifteen successful surgical operations, five open heart and ten interventional cardiac catheterisations, have been performed.
The hospital is non-governmental, non-profit making and a specialised charitable organisation committed to helping children with cardiac problems.
Belay Abegaz (MD) founder and director, said the Centre will establish a molecular/cellular research institute adjacent to the cardiac centre, at an estimated cost of $7 million. The institute is expected to engage in genetic engineering, vaccine creation and training activities.
Meseret Breaks Women’s Indoor record for 5,000m
Meseret Defar Tola of Ethiopia broke the women’s 5,000m at the GE Stockholm indoor meet with a finishing time of 14 minutes 24.37seconds!!