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Ethiopia and the European Union signed a financing agreement amounting to €36 million (1.17 billion birr). The agreement is part of the climate change budget supporting program, report reveals.

The grant will support Ethiopia "grow greener" by reducing its greenhouse gas emissions. The program also focuses on the mitigation of the impact of climate change and reduction of greenhouse gas emission and livelihood assistance through directly supporting the government structures.

The Environment, Forest and Climate Change Commission, and the Ministry of Trade and Industry, in collaboration with regional states, will be the main actors implementing the project.

Neven Mimica, EU's Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, remarked "Environmental sustainability and climate action are critical to achieving Ethiopia's ambitious growth and development objectives."

"The EU's €36 million contribution will help two key sectors – forestry and industry – to become more sustainable and mitigate the consequences of climate change," he said.

The bulk of the finance will, consequently, be channeled through the Ethiopian government aiming to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from forests and industries. Three million of the 36 will be used to enhance the Ethiopia's measurement, reporting and verification systems, making them complaint with Paris agreement standards, it was pointed out.

Ahmed Shide, Ethiopia's Minister of Finance and Economic Cooperation, said the support will help increase support for government climate change mitigation systems.

This project is aimed at supporting the effort of transforming the economic structure towards climate resilient green economy in the coming three years, he further noted.

The EU's development portfolio supports Ethiopia's national strategy, above all in food security and agriculture, health, infrastructure (including energy, roads and climate change) and governance.

In a related development, Neven Mimica, EU's Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, has also met and held talks with Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed. During their meeting, lauding the strong Ethiopia - EU tie, Mr. Mimica reconfirmed EU's support to Ethiopia and to Prime Minister Abiy "for continuing to drive the reforms unabated."


Source: https://www.2merkato.com/news/alerts/5760-ethiopia-eu-sign-€36-mn-financing-agreement


With a vision of placing Ethiopia among the top 100 ‘Doing Business’ ranking countries by 2021, the national committee led by Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, comprising key government entities, is conducting a review of the key reforms undertaken over the past few months towards creating a conducive business environment. 

While the short term milestones have been on legal reforms, Prime Minister Abiy highlighted that institutional reforms to build the requisite implementation capacity and creating public awareness on the new ways of doing business will be a key component in the medium to long term. 

The key short-term achievements of the past few months reviewed by the committee were put under eight categories: starting a business, getting credit, trading across borders, paying tax, dealing with construction permits, registering property, enforcing contracts, and getting electricity.

Moving forward, Prime Minister Abiy assigned chairing of the national ‘Doing Business’ committee to the Ministry of Trade and Industry and the Ministry of Innovation and Technology on a rotation basis, to drive the implementation of established medium and long term priorities set. 

He also announced that a new national-level committee will soon be launched to steer progress in jobs creation and investments over the course of the Ethiopian year 2012, which starts in September 2019, in synchronicity with the ‘Doing Business’ committee.

Creating an enabling business environment for private sector investments is a critical pillar for creating three million jobs in the new year, the Prime Minister's office tweeted.


Source: https://www.2merkato.com/news/alerts/5763-ethiopia-s-doing-business-committee-led-by-the-pm-meets-to-evaluate-progress



Ethio Telecom, the sole telecom service provider in Ethiopia, announced it has garnered a revenue of 36.3 billion birr, amounting to $1.26 billion, in the recently concluded Ethiopian fiscal year. 

The revenue, despite a seven percent increase compared to last year's, is 85 percent of the target set by the company. This comes despite a 40 to 50 percent tariff discount made earlier this year. Since the tariff reduction, traffic rose to 130 percent in data usage and 19 percent in voice calls.

Frehiwot Tamiru, Ethio Telecom's CEO, said at a press briefing the company has paid $362 million of its debt which has been pending for the last three years. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) stood at 24.5 billion birr, attaining 79 percent of the target, showing an increase of 5.6 percent compared to the preceding year. Mrs. Frehiwot further remarked negotiations have been held with several international telecommunication companies to further modernize the telecommunication system in the country. The company has also paid 16.2 billion birr in taxes, and 7 billion birr in dividends.

Ethio-telecom’s total subscribers have reached 43.6 million, achieving 95 percent of the target and showing a 15 percent increase compared to the same period last year. The figure results in tele-density of 44.5 percent. The number of mobile voice service subscribers stands at 41.92 million, data and internet users at 22.3 million and fixed service users at 1.2 million.

In spiate of challenges such as telecom fraud, power outage and tampering with fiber cables, Ethio Telecom has seen a rise in international incoming traffic to 50 percent, which has been declining consistently in the previous years.

Source: https://www.2merkato.com/news/alerts/5764-ethiopia-s-sole-telecom-provider-collects-126-bn-this-fiscal-year



The Ethio-Djibouti Railway Corporation (EDR) has announced it is planning to double its freight and passenger service trips to match up the fast-growing demand on its Ethiopia-Djibouti route. 

Tilahun Sarka (Engineer), EDR Director-General, speaking to ENA, said the railway is registering remarkable achievements both with the freighter and commuter services and will continue scaling it up. Mr. Tilahun also noted as "outstanding achievement" for Ethiopia the reduction of travel time both freighter and passenger trains.

Ethio-Djibouti Railway targets to achieve Ethiopia’s 85 percent freighter facility, the Director-General said, noting that “most of all transporting commodities on time and avoiding demurrage has paid off.”

“We are working to transport 40 to 50 percent of what is now being transported by trucks. That means we will have four freight train trips daily from Addis Ababa to Djibouti instead of two trips [as in] under [the] current practice,” he added. While it took 100 trucks three days to transport 212 containers, these can now be handled in one 11-hour trip with the two freight trains. This, Mr. Tilahun noted, "is of paramount importance" since Ethiopia imports about 13 million tons of commodities [each year] via Djibouti.

The passenger train, according to the Director-General of the EDR, has transported some 150,000 passengers in 2018, collecting some 700 million birr. Still, the plan is to see this figure doubled. 

The train commutes, Mr. Tilahun remarks, can also be seen as "exemplary for the socio-economic and political" ties between Ethiopia and Djibouti. Citizens of Djibouti, too, are appreciative of the services of the electric railway which commenced on January 1, 2018.

Built with an outlay of $4.2 billion, the Ethio-Djibouti Railway has reduced the travel time between Addis Ababa and Djibouti from three days to just 12 hours, or less.

Source: https://www.2merkato.com/news/alerts/5766-ethiopia-djibouti-train-services-to-double-passenger-freight-capacitya


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