Addis Ababa November 10/2017 Foreign Affairs Minister Dr. Workneh Gebeyehu has briefed the Special Envoys of Norway, United Kingdom and the United States about the ongoing development of the revitalized peace process in South Sudan and Sudan.
The troika, Norway, UK, and USA, has been actively participating in the peace process in the two countries.
Dr. Workneh briefed the Specials Envoys about the efforts IGAD leaders have been exerting to quickly implement the peace process in South Sudan.
He has commended the support of the troika to IGAD initiatives.
The Minster underscored that the revitalization process of peace agreements in South Sudan and Sudan has shown progress.
The Special Envoys had chance to talk with various stakeholders responsible in the ongoing peace process.
Dr. Workneh has called for active participation of the troika.
The Special Envoys on their part have appreciated the role of IGAD in general and Ethiopia’s role in particular in bringing lasting peace to South Sudan and Sudan.
Addis Ababa November 10/2017 British International Trade Secretary Dr. Liam Fox has announced today that the United Kingdom has doubled the amount of export finance it is making available to support UK-Ethiopia bilateral trade.
The export finance is increased from 100 million pound to 200 million.
The Trade Secretary leading a UK business delegation has visited the Ethiopian Airlines and inaugurated British Pittards Shoe Factory.
After visiting Ethiopian Airlines facilities and holding discussions, Dr. Fox told ENA that the airline has showing astonishing success.
He said the signing of 1.2 billion pound agreement between the UK motor company Rolls-Royce and Ethiopian shows UK's confidence on the activities of the airline.
Ethiopian Airlines CEO Tewolde Gebremariam said UK is one of the oldest destinations and business partners of the airline.
Ethiopian has shared the technological and technical advancements from UK companies in order to improve its services qualities, he added.
The newly inaugurated British Pittards Shoe Factory has created 1500 jobs to Ethiopians.
The business and investment cooperation between the two countries has reached over 400 million pounds.
Earlier in the year the British government announced that Ethiopian companies will enjoy duty-free access to the British market for all sectors after the UK leaves the European Union.
Addis Ababa November 10/2017 Ethiopian Investment Commission (EIC) has conducted a workshop that will work to improve Ethiopia’s investment climate and its rank on the World Bank's Doing Business Report.
Speaking about the Investment Climate Reform Program, EIC Commissioner Fitsum Arega said the reform is aimed at supporting the country to improve its rank in doing business by improving the small and medium business enterprises.
The Investment Climate Reform chaired by Prime Minister Hailemariam will reportedly meet weekly to finalize the program within a few months, it was learned.
“We need to do a lot of improvement as we have learned a lot in the last two years in an effort to coordinate this initiative and improve the business climate”, Fitsum said. Doing Business report is an independent evaluation flagship of the World Bank that evaluates ease of doing business in 190 countries. Doing Business measures regulations affecting 11 areas of the life of a business. Ten of these areas are included in the ranking on the ease of doing business: starting a business, dealing with construction permits, getting electricity, registering property, getting credit, protecting minority investors, paying taxes, trading across borders, enforcing contracts and resolving insolvency. Doing Business also measures labor market regulation.
The indicators are used to analyze economic outcomes and identify what reforms of business regulation have worked, where and why.
Ethiopia was ranked 161 out of 190 countries in doing business in 2016/17.
Mekele November 10/2017 FDI Growing in Ethiopia The growing flow of Foreign Direct Investment to Ethiopia will play a big role in the enhancement of the country’s industrial development, according to Ethiopian Investment Commission (EIC).
While opening the 10th Investment Consultative Forum in Mekelle yesterday, EIC Deputy Commissioner Teka Gebreyesus said the suitable investment environment and other incentives have contributed to the growth.
The leadership of Mozambique and Tanzania in attracting FDI two years ago has been taken over by Ethiopia since last year, EIC Planning and Strategy Director Nigusu Gurmu revealed.
He added that this has helped the country in promoting its investment opportunities in various international forums.
According to the Director, Ethiopia’s flow of FDI, which was 3.27 billion USD in the Ethiopian budget year 2008, had in the following year grown to USD 4.17 billion.
China, India and the Netherlands are the leading investors in the country.
Addis Ababa November 10/2017 A business delegation led by Senior Ministers of UK Department for International Development (DFID), and Department for International Trade (DIT) expressed desire to boost trade and investment ties with Ethiopia.
Following the discussion held with Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn on Friday, DIT Secretary of State Dr. Liam Fox, said “there is a lot of interest in UK about being able to invest in the incredible potential and opportunities that exist in this country and we discussed some of the ways that we might make that a reality”.
“We had very friendly, very constructive discussion about the future relationship between United Kingdom and Ethiopia, how that we might help in some of the issues about opening up the economy making it more investor friendly.”
According to Dr. Fox, members of the business delegation have shown interest in investing in the country mainly in infrastructure, transport, energy, telecommunications and connectivity.
Jeremy Lefroy, the Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy to Ethiopia said “Our aim is to increase UK investment in Ethiopia and trade with Ethiopia both export from Ethiopia to the UK and from UK to Ethiopia and we are determined to work with the Ethiopian government.”
“We really recognize the Ethiopian government determinations to create jobs especially for young people and we would like to support that”, he said.
Noting that the number of companies that are interested in investing in Ethiopia is increasing, the Envoy said “8 to 10 are here with us and they are mainly interested in infrastructure and energy”. More than 320 UK companies are investing in Ethiopia.
According to Dr. Aklilu Hailemichael Foreign Affairs State Minister, said the Prime Minister has briefed the delegation about the plan to promote public-private partnership so as to boost capability of the private sector.
The Premier noted that the expertise and experience in UK and other countries will enable Ethiopia to realize this.
The Premier has also briefed the delegation about Ethiopia's priority investment areas - labor intensive industries that will create massive job opportunities.
Addis Ababa October 10/2017 The national political parties that are taking part in the negotiation have failed to agree on the name of the national electoral board of Ethiopia (NEBE) body.
The parties argued in two proposals – continuing with the existing name and change it to commission.
The ruling party, EPRDF, argued the need to continue with the existing name as the name of the electoral body is already stated in the constitution.
EPRDF said a viable justification is needed to make the change following constitutional procedures.
It argued that there is no justification that make necessary to consider the inquired amendments to the constitution.
Rather than wasting time on arguing on semantic issues, EPRDF suggested to discuss on procedures related to number of its members; how they should be appointed, and their mandate and responsibilities as well as office term if necessary.
“The name shall not be changed from the constitution, which will take place under the right constitutional procedure, unless a proper and plausible reason is found” EPRDF stressed.
A number of negotiating political parties including All Oromo People’s Democratic Party, YeEthiopia Raie Party, All Ethiopian National Movement and the Gadaa System Advancement Party have accepted EPRDF’s proposal.
On the other hand, the 11 parties remained in their earlier stand of changing the electoral body’s name to ‘National Electoral Commission’ expressing fear that the board’s credibility could be in question.
Unable to resolve their differences on the issue, the political parties agreed to come up with ideas to narrow the gaps that seem to be at a deadlock. They agreed to meet on November 14, 2017.