Ambassador Girma Birru Geda on Ethio-US Relations
Girma Birru Geda is a familiar name in Ethiopian politics in general and the private sector in particular. This is because of the long years of distinguished public service he had provided.
Before becoming Ambassador to the United States and nonresident Ambassador of Ethiopia to Mexico and Jamaica, Girma served as Minister of Trade and Industry from 2001 to 2010. He had been a Minister of Economic Development and Cooperation for six years before that.
Ambassador Girma started his career as an economist in the Office of the Council of Ministers in 1982. Since then, he also served, representing Ethiopia, as alternate governor of the World Bank and of the African Development Bank and as a board member of the PTA Bank, currently known as the Trade and Development Bank from 1995 to 2001.
Girma had offered leadership to several public enterprises. He had been a chairman and member of the board of directors of the then Ethiopian Electric Power Corporation, Development Bank of Ethiopia, Ethiopian Investment Agency, Ethiopian Roads Authority, and the World Bank-funded Ethiopian Social Rehabilitation Development Fund.
The soft spoken and detail oriented politician holds a master’s degree in Economic Policy and Planning from the Institute of Social Studies, The Hague, Netherlands; and a bachelor’s degree in Economics from the Addis Ababa University.
EBR’s Amanyehun SiSAY visited the Ethiopian Embassy in Washington DC and has the privilege of conversing with the able diplomat on a broad range of issues including the current state of diplomatic, economic, trade and investment relations between Ethiopia and the United States. They have discussed about the need to productively engage the Ethiopian Diaspora in the development of the country and other issues. The following is an excerpt.