Norway to Double Development Assistance to Ethiopia
The Government of Norway has decided to double its development assistance to Ethiopia, Norway’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs disclosed.
State Minister of Foreign Affairs Ambassador Birhane Gebrekristos held discussions today with his Norwegian counterpart Hans Brattskar.
Ambassador Birhane told ENA that the political, diplomatic and development cooperation between Ethiopia and Norway has been improving.
He said Norway’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Hans Brattskar has communicated to him the desire of the Norwegian government to double the financial, material and technical support it has been providing for Ethiopia.
The Government of Norway is ready to share its well developed experience in education to make the broad-based efforts underway in the sector successful, he stated.
The two sides have also agreed to closely cooperate in continental and international issues, besides their collaboration in the economic sector, according to Ambassador Birhane.
Norway’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hans Brattskar, on his part said his country wants to further improve its political and economic cooperation with Ethiopia.
Brattskar, who said that the Government of Norway has decided to double its development assistance to Ethiopia, added that Ethiopia is becoming a strong partner of Norway in Africa.
Beyond diplomatic and political relations of the two countries, Norwegian investors will come to Addis Ababa soon to make investment feasibility studies and consult the concerned stakeholders, he revealed.
UNDP, Israel partner to enhance knowledge transfer for Ethiopia’s development
UNDP Ethiopia and Israel’s Agency for International Development Cooperation (MASHAV) are exploring a bilateral cooperation to help Ethiopia access technical knowledge and innovation in the fields of agriculture, entrepreneurship, private sector development and gender mainstreaming.
Ilan Fluss, Deputy Head of MASHAV said that: “The partnership with UNDP is very important one for MASHAV. UNDP is a central development partner. This agreement will enable MASHAV to transfer its expertise in areas such as innovation, entrepreneurship and food security in a more effective way for the benefit of the people of Ethiopia, a very important country for Israel. MASHAV will be happy to create more partnerships with other development partners.”
The embassy of Israel in Ethiopia has been working for the last year together with UNDP in the process that led to this signing.
Both MASHAV and UNDP seek to build upon and strengthen their existing development efforts which support Ethiopia to achieve its development agenda. Within this MASHAV-UNDP collaborative framework, support to Ethiopia will continue primarily on enhancing agricultural systems that add value to agricultural production thus fueling entrepreneurship and private sector growth.
This new bilateral cooperation will be guided by UNDP and MASHAV’s common focus on needs-driven and impact-oriented interventions through skills enhancements and facilitating technology transfers.
Ethiopia is one among 140 countries across the world where MASHAV is supporting capacity building efforts through training, study and exposure visits.
UNDP’s support to Ethiopia focuses on promoting partnerships, innovation and results in the areas of economic growth and poverty reduction, climate resilient green growth and democratic governance and capacity development.
“We are very happy to explore this new partnership initiative with MASHAV as it will help UNDP expand the scope and reach of development initiatives in Ethiopia, particularly given our shared focus on innovation and building resilience,” said UNDP Ethiopia Country Director Mr. Samuel Bwalya.
East, Southern Africa To Launch Free Trade Zone
VENTURES AFRICA – In a move that will certainly heighten regional trading and integration regionally and continentally, ministers from the regional blocs of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), East African Community (EAC) and the Southern African Development Community (SADC) have endorsed the launch of a tripartite Free Trade Area (FTA).
This development arose from the recent Tripartite Sectoral Committee of Ministers in Burundi and the FTA is to be launched in December during the tripartite summit of Heads of State and Government in Egypt.
In a statement released after the meeting, the ministers released the economic configuration of the FTA saying it will encompass 26 member states from the 3 blocs, a total population of 625 million people and a GDP of $1.2 trillion which is roughly half of the membership of the African Union and 58 percent of the continent’s GDP.
“The Tripartite FTA popularly known as the Grand Free Trade Area, will be the largest economic bloc on the continent and the launching pad for the establishment of the Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA) in 2017. It offers significant opportunities for business and investment within the Tripartite and will act as a magnet for attracting foreign direct investment into the tripartite region. The business community, in particular, will benefit from an improved and harmonized trade regime that reduces the cost of doing business,” read the statement signed by Sindiso Ngwenya, COMESA Secretary-General and Chairperson of the Comesa-EAC-SADC Tripartite Taskforce.
Chairperson of the ministerial meeting, Chiratidzo Mabuwa, who is also the Deputy Minister of the Zimbabwean Ministry of Commerce and Industry described the agreement as a “milestone in regional and continental integration.”
In her words; “Africa has now joined the league of emerging economies and the grand FTA will play a pivotal role in the transformation of the continent. We have made significant progress in negotiations on trade in goods, and we now need to expedite negotiations on trade-related areas, including trade in services, intellectual property and competition policy to ensure equity, among all citizens of the wider region.”
All concepts of economic development in Africa point to regional integration as an important lever. The idea of “One Africa” has been in the works for decades especially because most of the continent’s markets are small and isolated by multiple trade barriers.
Regional economic blocs have a stronger voice continentally and internationally. If Africa can pool its resources together, countries that were hitherto small and weak can take bold steps on the global scene particularly in trade negotiations. With this Free Trade Area, Eastern and Southern Africa may be taking the critical first step in birthing One Africa.
Horn of Africa pipeline gets World Bank funds
The World Bank is to pour millions of dollars into financing a planned oil pipeline to exploit discoveries in the Horn of Africa region.
The funds are just part of an $8bn financial assistance package pledged by the bank and other global financial institutions to improve the region’s business prospects and socio-economic conditions.
A joint trip by the World Bank, European Union, African Development Bank, African Union Commission, Islamic Development Bank and the Intergovernmental Agency for Development to the area this week laid out a road path to economic improvement in the region’s countries, according to upstreamonline.com.
The World Bank has itself pledged $1.8bn to boost economic growth, reduce poverty and spur business activity in the eight countries in the region, including the major oil producers of Sudan and South Sudan. Emerging hydrocarbons nations Uganda and Kenya are also included, as are Somalia, Eritrea, Ethiopia and Djibouti.
The World Bank’s private sector arm, International Finance Corporation , will provide $600m, some of which will go towards funding the pipeline linking Uganda and Kenya.
The pipeline has been planned for some time, with the Kenyan coastal town of Lamu to host export facilities.
“A new World Bank Group paper forecasts that the Horn will undergo dramatic and lasting change when oil production starts in Kenya, Uganda, and possibly Somalia and Ethiopia,” the bank said in a statement.
The EU will provide some $3.7 bn in funding up to 2020, with the African Development Bank chipping in $1.8bn and the Islamic Development Bank pledging up to $1bn to its four member countries of Sudan, Somalia, Djibouti and Uganda.
Chinese Company to Build Road for Omo Kuraz Sugar Factory
A 79-kilometer asphalt road which would help to transport the products of Omo Kuraz Sugar Factory is going to built with 1.66 billion birr.
The Chinese company Sino Hydro Corporation concluded an agreement today with the Ethiopian Roads Authority to construct the road.
Speaking during the signing ceremony, ERA Director-General Zaid Woldegebriel said the new road would be built in South Omo Zone where there is no infrastructure.
Besides helping to move the products of the sugar factory, the new road will stop the traffic movement around Mago National Park thus protecting the wild animals in the vicinity.
The road will also link many kebeles and villages in the zone, it was indicated.
According to Zaid, Sino Hydro has a respectable record for carrying out over 10 projects during its decade long stay in Ethiopia.
The Chinese company has agreed to complete the road within two years .
Tourism master plan to help Ethiopia be top tourist destination:IGAD
Ethiopia would be one of the top five tourist destination countries in Africa if it properly implements the Sustainable Tourism Master Plan, being formulated to boost the sector, IGAD said.
The master plan would help the nation to realize its goal of becoming one of the top five tourist destinations by 2020, advisor to the preparation of the master plan at IGAD Dr Ray Muntida told ENA.
The master plan tabled yesterday for discussion to gather additional inputs to be incorporated in the draft sustainable tourism master plan (STMP).
The STMP is an initiative currently being developed through the technical support provided by the Sub-Regional Office for Eastern Africa (SRO-EA) and the Division for Regional Integration and Trade (RITD), in partnership with the Ministry of Culture and Tourism.
He expressed hope that the nation would achieve the target before the deadline because of its stability, fast economic growth and interlink between the master plan and growth and transformation plan of the country.
The nation needs to continue the infrastructure development and the strong commitment of the government and the private sector to realize the goal, he noted.
The master plan is part of the on-going process of the implementation of the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) sustainable tourism master plan (STMP).
Ethiopia is the first country in the bloc to prepare national master plan, he added, Uganda is expected to be next in preparing a national master plan.
ECA has covered the cost for the formulation of the national master plan, in which the process has entailed extensive field missions across the country, in-depth interviews with key stakeholders drawn from various sectors including public, private, professional organizations, civil society, regional government officials and academia.
The IGAD STMP was informed by a regional tourism study commissioned by UNECA, SRO-EA in 2010 and the green light for its formulation approved at the 15th meeting of the Intergovernmental Committee of Experts (ICE) of SRO-EA that took place in Djibouti, between 21st to 24th February 2011, whose main focus was on tourism under the theme Towards a Sustainable Tourism Industry in Eastern Africa.
The IGAD STMP has since been completed and was officially launched the IGAD Tourism Inter-Ministerial forum held in Nairobi, Kenya last year.
The tourism industry in Ethiopia is identified as a key sector in both the 1st and 2nd Growth and Transformation Plans of the country.
The identification of the sector as such is due its strong potential to bring about meaningful socio-economic development owing to the fact that such potential remains largely untapped. For instance, in terms of the prevailing cultural and heritage resources, the country is ranked at position 33 globally, above Egypt which is ranked 39th, and is regarded as one of the safest countries in the world.
Yet, despite its current challenges, Egypt continues to draw over 9 million international tourist arrivals annually compared to the country’s 550 000 as of last year. Nonetheless, the industry still contributes 12.3 percent of the GDP, is a leading foreign exchange earner and a key sector for both domestic and foreign investment valued at 16.38 billion Birr in 2013.
The industry is also a one of the leading employers generating over 2.4 million jobs both directly and indirectly.
ECA becomes 3rd largest UN duty station
A new office facility, that makes ECA the third largest UN duty station after New York and Geneva in terms of building portfolio, inaugurated today at the ECA compound in Addis Ababa.
The facility will house UNOAU, UNAMID, UNICEF, UNOPS, WHO and UNHCR representation to the African Union Commission and ECA.
Speaking on the occasion Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Dessalegn noted that the continent was struggling against colonialism and apartheid during the establishment of ECA in 1958, Africa is now witnessing development.
Today, Africa has liberated itself from colonialism and embarked upon an era of development, stability and good governance, he noted.
“It is for this reason that I am hopeful that this building would herald the consolidation and realization’ of this new chapter- an era of African Renaissance.” he said.
“Africa is now in a new beginning, as is witnessed in the good performance of many African economies” he added.
Despite the progress, Africa still faces major challenges related to its ‘institutional weakness’, he added, the Ebola crisis is an example.
He expressed view that an ‘effective’ support from the international community would help Africa attain development.
“I am of the view that with a more effective international partnership for development, Africa has a great possibility in attaining its renaissance.”
In his keynote speech, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon on his part said the opening of the new facility would help to bring the UN staff together thereby harmonize UN operations, saying “Most of all, it means the United Nations is better placed to deliver better results.”
“With the completion of the new facility, we take an important step towards a future of dignity, prosperity and peace.” Ban said.
Noting the ECA compound has a rich history, the Secretary-General said Africa Hall, a gift from Ethiopia upon establishment of the ECA in 1958, has seen memorable events, including the founding of the Organization of African Unity more than half a century ago.
“Thanks to this new facility, we have been able to cater for growing demand for office space and increase the number of staff working in the compound to more than1, 000.” said Executive Secretary of ECA, Carlos Lopes.
Although, the facility wouldn’t allow bringing all UN staff into the compound, it will house UNOAU, UNAMID, UNICEF, UNOPS, WHO and UNHCR representation to the African Union Commission and ECA, he added
Ethiopia has donated the building at the current ECA compound, known as Africa Hall for the ECA upon its establishment in 1958.
Established as one of the UN’s five regional commissions, ECA’s mandate is to promote the economic and social development of its member States, foster intra-regional integration, and promote international cooperation for Africa’s development.
Dr. Tedros visits Kuwait over the weekend
Foreign Minister, Dr. Tedros Adhanom, led an Ethiopian delegation including the Ministers of Finance and Agriculture to Kuwait over the weekend.
Dr. Tedros delivered the “Food Security Project Proposal” from Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn to Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmed Al-Jabir Al-Sabah, Amir of the State of Kuwait, in accordance with the discussions the two leaders had held at the Africa- Arab Summit last year.
The Amir welcomed the proposal, noting that food security was crucial to Ethiopia, to Kuwait and to the international community.
Dr. Tedros congratulated the Amir of the State of Kuwait in his designation in September as a ‘Humanitarian Leader’ by the United Nations Secretary General and of the State of Kuwait as a ‘Humanitarian Center’.
Dr. Tedros said the Amir and Kuwait which allocates 1.3% of its GDP to humanitarian aid, fully deserved the recognition, noting their support to the socio-economic development of Africa and of Ethiopia.
Dr. Tedros said Prime Minister Hailemariam was keen to boost socio-economic partnership with the State of Kuwait.
The Amir confirmed that Kuwait would remain committed to support the socio-economic efforts of Ethiopia to tackle poverty.
During his visit Dr. Tedros and his delegation also met with Sheikh Sabah Khalid Al-Hamad Al-Sabah, First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs.
Sheikh Al-Sabah appreciated the role of Ethiopia in working for peace and stability in the Horn of Africa and welcomed the positive dialogue between Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt concerning Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam.
He expressed interest in starting preparations for the joint Ministerial Commission meeting, and also explained he was ready to support efforts of the Kuwait private sector to utilize investment opportunities available in Ethiopia.
During the visit to Kuwait, Ethiopia’s Minister of Finance, Sofian Ahmed, and Minister of Agriculture, Tefera Derbew, held talks with the Directors of the Kuwait Fund for Arab
Development and the Investment Authority as well as the Kuwait Ministers of Finance, Oil and Agriculture on food security and socio-economic development.
Japan to strengthen support to Ethiopia’s development endeavors
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said his country will strengthen the support it extends for the development endeavors of Ethiopia.
While receiving Speaker of the House of Peoples’ Representatives of Ethiopia, Abadua Gemeda, the Premier said Japan will continue to support Ethiopia’s efforts towards development through JAICA and other international agencies.
Commending Ethiopia’s efforts in building lasting peace in the Horn of Africa, Prime Minister Abe said Japan will continue to extend support to this end.
Remembering the talks with Prime Minister Hailemariam Dessaegn on the sideline of the recent UN Summit in New York, Abe said his government will work to further deepen the bilateral ties between Ethiopia and Japan.
The Prime Minister said his government will consider the request from the Ethiopian government to host the 6th Tokyo International Conference on African Development scheduled for 2016.
Lauding Japanese support extended to Ethiopia’s development activities, Speaker Abadula requested Japan to enhance the support it provides for the successful implementation of Kaizen in Ethiopia.
He also requested for increased Japanese support to Ethiopia’s efforts to ensure durable peace and stability in the area.
Ethio-South Korea relation deepening
President Dr Mulatu Teshome said that the bilateral relationship between Ethiopia and South Korea has been growing.
While discussing with departing South Korean Ambassador to Ethiopia Kim Jong Geun yesterday, the President noted the ties between the two countries in economic, social, political and cultural areas have been deepening.
The President stressed the need to deepen ties in investment and trade to further boost the relationships, according to a high level official who attended the meeting.
The departing Ambassador for his part said that the bilateral relationship between the two countries is further strengthening.
He noted that 20 South Korean companies are investing in Ethiopia in various areas, including industry and infrastructure development, among others.
According to the Ambassador, South Korea is preparing to provide assistance for construction of the Modjo- Hawassa highway.
After a decade of closure, Ethiopia, which sent 6,000 soldiers to support South Korea during the Korean War, re-opened its Embassy in Seoul last year.
The South Korean government has launched a job-training program for 300 descendants of Korean War veterans in Ethiopia, which expected to further deepen bilateral ties between the two countries.
Nyota Minerals’ cash sufficient to progress its Ethiopian opportunity
Thursday, October 30, 2014 by Proactive Investors
Despite the rains, a significant site visit was able to go ahead in October to familiarise a contractor plus existing and potential new project management with the proposed alluvial operations, chief executive officer Richard Chase revealed.
Reviewing third quarter operations, Chase said the company completed the sale of its stake in the Tulu Kapi project, and made the annual renewal applications for its Northern Block exploration licences.
Nyota received A$1.3 million from the sale of 25% of Tulu Kapi, giving it a cash balance at the end September of A$1.33 million.
This cash position, combined with the company’s significantly reduced overhead costs, is expected to allow it to pursue its Ethiopian alluvial gold opportunity as well as having funds to assess new project opportunities, the company said.
Stratex, Thani complete formation of new East, North African company
JOHANNESBURG – Aim-listed exploration and development company Stratex on Monday announced that it had completed the formation of a new East and North Africa-focused exploration company in partnership with Thani Emirates Resource Holdings.
“Stratex is very pleased to have closed this deal which combines its assets in Ethiopia and Djibouti with those of our joint venture partner in Egypt,” Stratex nonexecutive chairperson Christopher Hall commented.
He explained that further exploration to evaluate the potential of the company’s properties in the region was going to require significant funding beyond Stratex’s resources, which did not fit in well with the company’s business model.
“By entering into [a] partnership with Thani, with its experience and record in the region, we have ensured that we do justice to this exciting portfolio of properties where we see a clear analogy with the rift-related, epithermal gold province in Argentina.
“We also gain indirect exposure to Egypt where Centamin has demonstrated the geological potential through the development of the Sukhari mine, with in excess of ten-million ounces of resource and, in time, other jurisdictions in the region,” Hall said.
The concessions being transferred to the newly formed ThaniStratex included the Blackrock licences, in Ethiopia, the Okilla, Assal and Dimoli Khan licences, in Djibouti, and the Hodine and Wadi Kareem licences, in Egypt.
“Planning is well advanced for further drilling at Blackrock, in northern Ethiopia, and an initial drill programme at Oklila, in Djibouti, where the surface sampling of the Pandora structure has returned some of the best results we have seen in the region,” Hall noted.
Stratex and Thani would each contribute $1-million in working capital to assess and add value to priority projects, while third-party investment would be sought in the future to further advance ThaniStratex’s portfolio prior to a planned listing on an appropriate stock exchange.
Ministry distributes over 6.6 mln improved bio-mass wood saver stoves
More than 6.6 million improved bio-mass wood saver stoves have been distributed during the past four years, the Ministry of Water, Irrigation and Energy (MoWIE) said.
This is out of the plan to distribute 7.1 million stoves during the past 4 years of the Growth and Transformation Plan (GTP) period, Bizuneh Tolcha, Public Relations and Communication Directorate Director at MoWIE, told WIC.
In addition to avoiding the emission of 6.7 million tons of carbon, the distribution of the wood saver stoves helped to protect destruction of 96, 361 hectares of forest for firewood, he said.
The stoves have also played a significant role in improving the livelihoods and health of the beneficiaries and saving their time, Bizuneh pointed out.
In related news, some 900,000 solar energy technologies were also distributed in the reported period, according to the director.
Moreover, over 8,000 bio-gas plants were built during the past 4 years of the GTP period, Bizuneh added.
MoWIE has been endeavoring to widely use alternative energy technologies to reach out areas where there is no access to modern energy, it was noted.
Canada: Okanagan surgical team bound for Ethiopia
KELOWNA– A group of Okanagan doctors, nurses and Rotary Club volunteers are part of a 21 person, all Canadian team heading to Ethiopia.
As part of Rotoplast Canada, the team will take over a hospital in the community of Bahir Dar for two weeks to perform life changing surgeries on mostly women and children.
They will repair cleft lips and cleft palates as well as provide burn treatment and gynecological surgeries.
In Africa’s tribal culture, people with physical injuries and abnormalities are often shunned.
Children may not be allowed to go to school and husbands often leave wives who are damaged by multiple pregnancies.
The team isn’t just providing medical care, it’s also providing an education component for local medical workers.
The goal is to open a satellite burn treatment centre in Bahir Dar within the next three years.
It means people outside of major centres in Ethiopia will have on-going access to treatment.
The team expects hundreds of people to show up for surgical screening.
Doctors will only be able to treat between 60 and 80 patients during the two week stay but many more locals will have access to long term treatment thanks to the training and equipment left behind.
The mission is partially funded by Rotary International which mandates that the program be sustainable.
The team leaves for Ethiopia on November 4th.