Starting a media organization, particularly in the print sector, and surfing the thorns for 100 editions takes nothing less than immense courage. But witnessing the thirst and trust of our readers and partners, carrying Sisyphus’ rock is worth the effort.Yet, when it comes to influencing public policy, shaping public opinion, and defending the private sector’s interest—foundational pillars of Ethiopian Business Review (EBR)—we have work remaining to meet these objectives. While most reporting is politics-focused, EBR fills the crucial gap of economy and business journalism which is lacking in the nation.
No doubt, EBR remains a significant voice in the articulation and advancement of the private sector’s agenda to policymakers. Several of the economic changes the government has been undertaking over the past three years from ease of doing business to shrinking the state’s hands in the economy, from fiscal decentralization to regional economic integration, and from deregulation to institutional reconfiguration, have all been EBR’s top editorial agenda. The publication has been advocating for robust and more private sector-friendly policies.
EBR established a research & intelligence wing two years after establishment and plans to transform this into a full-fledged economic think tank to further serve private enterprise. The knowledge and data EBR’s economic research & business intelligence (ERBI) unit has accumulated over the past decade are more compiled and precise than some statistics provided by certain public institutions.
Administrations introduce mistaken antidotes for political and economic distortions profoundly because experts tasked with evaluating the economy and forwarding plans truly lack accurate and timely data which exhibits the state of the economy. Hence, they incorrectly diagnose and forward skewed policy recommendations.
Nonetheless, when it comes to imparting its expertise to the general public with a view of informing and influencing policy-making, EBR’s success has been hampered by many factors. Limited circulation owing to the language barrier, challenges arising from extremely backward and traditional distribution modalities, and the ever-mounting cost of printing have been significant challenges. Ethiopia imports every raw material to print, and thus prices jump every time exchange rate variations occur. The quality of graduates joining the media industry has also declined, making it even more difficult to maintain content quality. Unfortunately, the very low-paying nature of the sector also makes staff retention a daunting task.
Despite all odds, EBR has built a reputation of delivering well-researched analysis and balanced content, all the while setting new directions for researchers, elevating readers’ awareness, reintroducing Ethiopia’s readiness to foreign investors, and training economic and business journalists.
Ten years down the line, EBR’s wealth remains the trust of its valued readers. Its accumulated and up-to-date information and knowledge about the state of the Ethiopian economy and various sectors and sub-sectors, the private sector, and overall business environment are to be further utilized.
In this historic edition, we seize the opportunity to especially thank our valued staff that endeavor to deliver quality to meet the growing expectations of our esteemed readers. We also recognize and express our heartfelt appreciation to our advertisers, subscribers, retailers, content providers, sources, printers, and all partners who contributed so much to our journey.
And yet, we still promise that EBR’s best is yet to come. We will strive for more excellence in our works and satisfy your needs and expectations.
9th Year • September 2021 • No. 100