26 December 2013 News Round Up


Revenue of horticulture export increasing

Amount of revenue Ethiopia is securing from the horticulture sector is increasing year by year, the Ethiopian Horticulture Producers and Exporters Association reported.

Association Chairperson Zelalem Mesele told ENA that the country has obtained 265.71 million USD during the 2011/12 year, which shows a 41.71 million USD increase compared to the previous year.

Flowers constitute the biggest share in terms of revenue enabling the country to obtain 212.56 million USD, while the balance goes to vegetables, fruits and herbs.

The size of land developed with flowers, vegetables, fruits and herbs is also increasing, ENA learned.

Over 12,550 hectares land has developed with flowers, vegetables, fruits and herbs during the reported period.

The size of land developed during 2011/12 exceeded the previous year by 6,038 hectares land.

The Chairperson attributed the success to the prevailing conducive investment environment, attractive incentive packages and overall government support.

The report says companies from Ecuador, the Netherlands, India and Kenya are showing interest to invest in the sector.

Ethiopia exports its horticulture products to over 100 destinations around the world.

The Netherlands, Germany, Saudi Arabia, Norway, Belgium, UAE, France, Japan Italy and United State are the first 10 destinations for Ethiopian horticulture products.



Construction of 40/60 condos well in progress

Construction of 40/60 condominium houses in Addis Ababa is well in progress; it is happening at a cost of 648 million Birr, the City Saving Houses Development Enterprise said.

Communication affairs head of the Enterprise, Yohannes Abayneh told ENA that 33 percent of the construction of the condominium houses has so far been finalized.

The report indicates 2,948 condominium houses are being built in five sites: Sengatera, Crown, Ehil Nigid, Asko and Tourist Nigid areas.

As for figures from the Enterprise, 25 contractors and consultants are working to finalize the condominium houses.

Those who are interested to get these houses are saving 40 percent of the price of the house to meet the remaining 60 per cent with loan from the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia (CBE).



Health Insurance system to be executed

Ethiopian Health Insurance Agency announced that it has completed preparations to put a new health Insurance system in to action throughout the country.

The Health Insurance that believed would make individuals and many families beneficiaries with limited amount of money is two in type: Public and Social Health Insurances.

General Director to the Ethiopian Health Insurance Agency Roman Tesfaye said the agency has sofar been using13 districts for trial on public Insurance; and opening some 24 branch offices to start providing social insurance services all over the country.

The social Health insurance service is provided for  employed citizens who have regular salary, while the public health insurance is for those who have no salary.

Stating that awareness raising activities have been carried out on the systems, Roman told FBC that the system which was planned to be put into action as off the coming January and done by collecting 3% from the employee and employer each has been postponed for unknown time.

The Health insurance service will include outpatient, surgery and pharmacy services except medical treatments that require high costs and long time like organ transplant, kidney and oversea medical treatments.

Roman said the medical fee for financially incapable citizens “carefully chosen”, will be covered by the government.



The 3rd Government and Private Sector Discussion held

The 3rd government and private sector discussion was held focusing on “tackling problems in thee process of establishing Partnership and Companies.

The Trade Minister Kebede Chane said partnerships should aim for strong economy, not for raiding.

Currently, there is a plan to establish a body that would lead the sector to solve system problems in partnerships and companies.

Research papers were also presented with the recommendations, on the discussion.

According to the researches, time taking signing documents activity after buying share, gaps seen in general, immediate or board meetings are identified as problems related to registration document confirmation, while business naming which have been taking too long was also said is one of the major.

The participants have also discussed on the solutions, like appointing a body that will supervise and administer how far the associations are grown and what they have done with the money, with firm audit system.



Ethiopia set to commence 3rd phase PCDP program with over $ 209 mln

Preparations are underway to begin the 3rd phase Pastoralist Community Development Project (PCDP) program with over 209 million US dollars next month, the Ministry of Federal Affairs said.
Ministry Public Relations Office Head, Abebe Worku, told WIC today that the third phase was launched following the successful implementation of the first and second phases.
The over 209 million US dollars project will be held in the pastoral community areas of Somali, Afar, Oromia and SNNP regional state, he indicated.
Out of the total fund, 110 US dollars was obtained from the World Bank, 85 million dollars from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), 13.2 dollars from beneficiary community and the balance from the government of Ethiopia, he said.
The project is expected to benefit 369, 161 pastoralists and semi-pastoralists in the aforementioned four regional states when it is completed, according to Abebe.
Pastoralist Community Development Project is part of the government’s plan to bring about equitable development across the country, it was learnt.



Ethiopia – Improvements in Utilizing Agoa

Ethiopia’s export to the United States has seen a steady growth in both value and variety over the past decade. The Ministry of Trade’s latest figures show that Ethiopia has exported more than 24 million USD to the US market in the nine months since January of this year. The revenue was obtained from export of garment, leather products, and silk. New additions to Ethiopia’s export portfolio also include factory produced malt and flours, an encouraging result in the country’s plan to increase export of value added items.

The nine month performance indicates that the country has been on a steady course to improve its export regime and try new markets other than traditional export destination. The increase in export to the United States is also an improvement in Ethiopia’s capacity to utilize the benefits of the African Growth and Opportunity Act, an initiative launched in 2000 by the US government to provide sub-Saharan countries duty-free access to the US market.



Megech Irrigation and Drinking Water Dam Project Launched

Construction on Megech Irrigation and Drinking Water Dam Project is launched, Fana Broadcasting Corporation reported.

The 1.8 billion m3 dam project, which will be built on Megech River near Gonder town, has a total of 2.4 billion birr budget allocated by the government, according to Fana.

Manager of the project Agonafir Zewde said the dam would allow the development of 17,000 hectares land using irrigation, in addition to securing drinking water supply for Gonder town for a century.

The construction of the 76m high and 890m long dam is being carried out by Water Works Construction Enterprise.



ESE Expects to Harvest 304 thousand Quintal of Select Seed

Ethiopian Seed Enterprise (ESE) expects to harvest over 304 thousand quintals of select seed during the ‘Meher’, a major harvest season in Ethiopia.

Aweke Belete, Public Relations Head of ESE told Walta Information Center that the select seed certified by agricultural experts, cover nearly 15.6 thousand hectares. This includes a farm owned by the Ethiopian Seed Enterprise, state farms and small holder farmers.

The amount of select seed expected to be harvested during the Meher season fell 18 percent lower than the previous year and five percent lower than the ESE projection due to mainly irregular rainfall, Aweke said.

Harvesting for the ‘Meher” season began a month ago and is expected to be finalized by the end of January.



Ethiopian Secures Financing for 4 Boeing 777-200 LR Freighters Deliveries

Ethiopian Airlines has mandated Natixis as Pre Delivery Payment (PDP) Facility Lead Arranger and Eastern and Southern African Trade and Development Bank (PTA Bank) as PDP Facility Co-Arranger to provide pre-delivery payment loan financing for its batch of four new Boeing 777-200 LR Freighter aircraft, to be delivered between autumn 2014 and winter 2015.


Ethiopian Airlines, Natixis and PTA Bank have announced today that they have completed the multi tranche PDP financing. Boeing will deliver 4 B777-200 LRF to the airline which will be operated in the group’s expanding cargo network around the world.

Ethiopian Cargo is the largest cargo operator in Africa with a network covering 24 destinations across Asia, Europe, Africa and Middle East, using 6 dedicated freighters. The addition of the 4 B777-200 LR Freighters is part of Ethiopian Cargo Vision 2025 strategic roadmap of supporting the fast growing exports of perishables from Ethiopia and enabling increased trade between Africa and the rest of the world.

“We are phasing-in the latest technology cargo aircraft with the aim of supporting Ethiopia’s exports and the booming trade between Africa and the rest of the world. The B777-200 LR Freighters have proven capabilities that are ideal for the transport of perishables. In addition to our two existing cargo hubs in Addis Ababa and Liege in Europe, we have recently established a third cargo hub in Lome, Togo, with our partner airline in West Africa, ASKY Airlines. Going forward, we plan to establish similar cargo hubs in Southern and Central Africa with the aim of facilitating trade and investment within Africa and between Africa and the rest of the world”, said Chief Executive Officer of Ethiopian Airlines, Tewolde Gebremariam.

Admassu Tadesse, President of the Eastern and Southern Africa Trade and Development Bank, remarked: “There is no doubt that Ethiopian Airlines is playing a very important role in inter connecting Africa with itself, and the rest of the world. As a regional financial institution, we are pleased to continue to support Ethiopian as it grows and serves Africa better than ever. It is certainly giving practical expression to its mantra as ‘The new spirit of Africa'”.

In line with its Vision 2025, Ethiopian Cargo aims to generate 2 billion dollars in revenue , uplift 820,000 tons of cargo and operate to 37 destinations using 18 dedicated freighters by 2025.



 CSA Projects 10% Crop Production Increase by Smallholders

The Central Statistical Authority (CSA) of Ethiopia projects a 10 percent increase crop production yield by smallholder farmers in the current fiscal year, Ethiopian Herald reported.


CSA’s director, Samia Zekaria told at a press conference yesterday that the data collected collected by the Agency last September has shown that, the country’s crop production could grow by 10 percent compared to a year earlier.

About 254 million quintal of yield is expected from 12 million hectare of land, a 23 million quintal increase from last year’s produce on almost the same amount of land covered by crops, Samia said.

The CSA’s projection covers only smallholder farmers, the main harvest season, and rain fed agriculture. Harvests from commercial farms, the belg season and crops cultivated with irrigation are not covered in this projection. The survey does not also took into consideration post harvest yeild loss, according to Samia.



Bishoftu Farm Service Center Inaugurated

The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) announced the inauguration of the Bishoftu Farm Service Center (FSCs), last Tuesday, December 17, 2013, Ethiopian Press Agency reported.

The Bishoftu Farm Service Center is the first of six such centers established to provide training to rural entrepreneurs and create Ethiopian-owned retail farm supply and service centers, according to the Ethiopian Press Agency.

Additional FSCs will also be opened in Ambo, Dodola, Fiche, Nekemte and Shashamane towns in the Oromia State.

These private, retail supply and farm service businesses will serve as innovative models in Ethiopia and throughout Africa.

In addition to a trained staff that provide services and training at each location, the FSCs also provide agricultural inputs, such as, quality seeds, fertilizer, plant protection products, and veterinary products, information and marketing links for Ethiopian smallholders, allowing them to transition from subsistence to commercial production, according to the Ethiopian Press Agency.

Implemented by CNFA, formerly the Citizens Network for Foreign Affairs, the USAID Commercial Farm Service Program provides grants and training to rural entrepreneurs, to create Ethiopian-owned retail farm supply and service centers.

The Commercial Farm Service Program is a two-year pilot activity of USAID supported by President Obama’s Feed the Future Initiative.



House Passed Hides and Skins Marketing Law

The Ethiopian House of Peoples’ Representatives passed the revised Raw Hides, Skins & Hides Marketing Proclamation during its ninth regular session on Thursday, The Reporter reported.


The law is said to streamline raw hides and skins trading process and strengthen the care accorded to hides and skins.

According to the proclamation, the law is aimed at to target the existing challenges in the supply and quality of leather and hide, and expanding a modern and fair trade system.

The revised law will limit the number of people involved in the marketing process with no contribution to the supply chain, to reduce prices.

The new proclamation passed with after a short deliberation, with a unanimous vote.




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