15 June 2014 News Round-Up


Market fluctuation delays gold production in Ethiopia


Market fluctuation delays gold production in Ethiopia

According to the Trade Ministry, Ethiopia eyed to $774.5 million over the past ten months from gold exports. It only earned $369.31million during the reported period.


World Bulletin/News Desk

Global gold market fluctuations have prompted an Australian company to delay gold production in western Ethiopia, the Ethiopian Ministry of Mines said Saturday.

“Gold production by Nyota Minerals has been delayed due to the unstable global gold market,” the ministry’s public relation deputy head Chala Bonsa told Anadolu Agency.

“But it is expected to commence production,” Bonsa said.

In 2013, the Australian company found a new gold deposit in western Ethiopia, some 500km from the capital.

Nyota recently reported that “it has entered into a conditional agreement to sell its remaining 25% stake in the Tulu Kapi Gold Project in Ethiopia to KEFI Minerals.”

Asked by AA if the ministry is aware of the deal, Bonsa said “the company has informed the ministry that it has changed its name from Nyota Minerals to KEFI Minerals three months ago.”

“Our purpose is to monitor that the company fulfills obligations stated in the agreement that it has signed with the ministry to explore gold,” Bonsa said.

He, however, said that the Australian company is expected to enter production within the remaining months of the current year.

According to the Trade Ministry, Ethiopia eyed to $774.5 million over the past ten months from gold exports. It only earned $369.31million during the reported period.



W/Bank provides $10m towards Ethiopia’s efforts to produce quality statistics




The World Bank has provided a $10 million grant to help the Government of Ethiopia increase the quality of its official statistics, reports said on Saturday.The grant agreement for the project was signed by Mr. Guang Zhe Chen, World Bank Country Director for Ethiopia and Ato. Ahmed Shide, Ethiopia’s State Minister for Economic Development.

The World Bank said the project will help to meet Ethiopia’s rapidly increasing demand for good quality statistics, by enhancing the organizational, human and physical capacity of the Central Statistics Agency (CSA).

Furthermore, the project will improve the data management capabilities of key Government Ministries Departments and Agencies in the National Statistics System and help to accurately measure progress on Ethiopia’s Growth and Transformation Plan targets, the Washington-based lender added.

Speaking at the signing ceremony, Mr. Chen said improving Ethiopia’s ability to produce quality data will contribute to sustainable development because data accuracy is not only key to evaluating the impact of development programs, it will also help to identify gaps and prioritize investment.

The project is part of the World Bank’s efforts to promote evidence based decision making, in line with its twin goals of reducing extreme poverty and promoting shared prosperity.



UAE, Sudanese JV to manufacture plastic poles


Having inked a joint venture deal, the United Arab Emirates-based Falcon Chemicals Llc under the license of the Sudanese Albazz Industries Plc, is to manufacture construction chemicals and water proofing products in Ethiopia. 

The company, that managed to finalize the setting up of a USD five million manufacturing plant in Ethiopia, has started to manufacture glass reinforced plastic (GRP) poles and manhole covers. According to Mohammed Hassen, chief executive officer (CEO) of Albazz Industries, GRP poles and manhole covers will mainly serve electric, telecom and water and sewerage agencies.

Officials of Albazz told reporters that currently the Addis Ababa Water and Sewerage Authority and Hawassa Town Administration had decided to procure some 9,000 manhole covers and 4,500 poles respectively. Another deal is on the way to be inked between the Ministry of Urban Development, Houses and Construction soon, officials of Albazz said.

The GRP poles and manholes are presumed to replace the existing poles and manhole covers made of iron. The new GRP technology will see a 50 percent cost reduction against the existing cast-iron poles in addition 70 percent of the manufacturing inputs are locally available. According to Abdurezaq Legesse, general communication head of Albazz, next to South Africa and Egypt, Ethiopia is third in the continent to have the carbon negative technology. Albazz will have the capacity of producing 200 GRP poles per day.

According to Mitika Goculdas, CEO of Falcon Chemicals, the three-year-long negotiations with Albazz finalized last year cementing a joint venture partnership where the latter affords technical, supervisory and monitoring services. It will also offer technology and guarantees when needed. When operations dash well in the future, Albazz will consider exporting Ethiopian made construction chemicals and waterproofing products to Sudan, South Sudan and Djibouti. In the near future, Albazz plans to erect a paint factory here.

Mebrahetu Meles (Ph.D.), minister of state for industry, said that Albazz is expected to manufacture seven strategic products for the local market. The timing of the manufacturing plant is ideal when the government is venturing to construct some one million houses, Mebrahetu said.



Ethiopia’s market attracts Omanis


Omani’s Inward Investment and Export Promotion agency (Ithraa) recently conducted research on the Ethiopian market to come up with over 50 products that had potential to penetrate into the Ethiopian market, according to the Times of Oman. 

The third Export to Ethiopia Workshop, organized by Ithraa to highlight the potential of the world’s twelfth fastest growing economy, concluded in Salalah with positive feedback from local businesses, according to the report. Based on an in-depth market study, 59 Omani products have been identified to be sold in Ethiopia, including food, marble, pharmaceuticals, cables, aluminum, and plastics.

Africa’s growth is expected to offer Omani companies exciting opportunities and experts expect that rising incomes will lead to higher consumer spending, which is projected to almost double over the next 10 years. “It’s these opportunities that resulted in sparking our interests so we commissioned an Ethiopian market study that predicts further economic momentum and points to outstanding opportunities for Omani exporters,” Nasima Al Balushi, director general of export development at Ithraa, said.

The study was conducted by Advanced Business Consultants in Association with the Addis Ababa-based sub-Saharan Africa Research and Training Center. The market research included one-on-one meetings with Omani exporters in target sectors to map product specifications and capacities in addition to a comprehensive primary survey carried out in Ethiopia.

The outcome of the Ithraa study has formed the basis for three road shows in Sohar, Muscat and Salalah, providing Omani companies that are looking to penetrate Africa with a comprehensive overview of how to enter the Ethiopian market. The sessions also highlighted demand and trends in light of Ethiopia’s recent infrastructure boom.

Opened in January 1997, originally known as The Omani Center for Investment Promotion and Export Development (OCIPED), Ithraa has been working to help attract investment and facilitate the export of Omani’s non-oil products and services.



Over 16,000 kebeles in Ethiopia get access to telecommunication services


Over 16,000 out of the total 18,000 kebeles (villages) in Ethiopia have gained access to telecommunication services, according to Ethio telecom.

Ethio telecom Corporate Communication Head, Abdurahim Ahmed, told WIC that there were very limited telephone lines and services in the country and it was impossible for the rural people to get telephone line in their villages some 10 years back.

But on the bases of highest government wishes and technology advantages, currently over 16,000 Kebeles have been benefited from getting access to telephone services in their localities, he said.

The rural communities were getting access to telecommunication services travelling to a distance of up to 30 kilometers. “But now they are getting the service within a maximum of 5 kilometers walking distance,” he said.

According to him, all rural kebeles would get access to telecommunication services by the end of the 2015.

Abdurahim further said that the Teledensity in the country has also reached to 27 per cent from only 0.23 per cent a decade ago.

The total number of Ethio-telecom customers that are benefiting from its various services has reached over 27 million, he said. It hopes to raise the number to 60 million by the end of the Growth and Transformation Plan (GTP) period.

Abdurahim finally said that Ethio-telecom is undertaking massive expansion works so as to alleviate the existing net work problems and improve the quality of its services.


Ethiopia straps up ICT to its development – Dr. Debretsion


Ethiopia has expanded and tied up Information Communication Technology (ICT) to its economic development, Minister of Information Communication Technology with the Rank of Deputy Minister Dr. Debretsion Gebremichael said.
Speaking at World Summit on the Information Society + 10 held from June 2-5, 2014 in Geneva, Switzerland, Dr. Debretsion said that Ethiopia has extensively using information communication technology for its development and registered encouraging results in the past ten consecutive years.
Having recognized the contribution of ICT in alleviating poverty and ensuring sustainable development, the Ethiopian government has designed policy, strategy and program in the sector and carrying out it.
In his speech at that Higher Level Policy Session held in Geneva, the minister emphasized that Ethiopia is in the right truck to meet six of the Millennium Development Goals and working day in day out to achieve the rest.
The country has exerted a lot of efforts to expand Information Communication Technology Infrastructure that enabled to install        e-governance and fiber optics has networked in most areas of the country, he added.
Land and wireless telephone, mobile and internets services have expanded well including the rural areas.
The minister also added that ICT is applied to help the developments in health, education and agriculture which would play greater roles in the entire development of the country.
World Summit on the Information Society + 10 has evaluated the role ICT has played in development in the past ten years and endorsed next ten years plan.



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