Samson BerhaneMarch 15, 2020

A Step in the Right Direction?

Establishing a stock market has been a hot issue under discussion in Ethiopia for almost two decades. While some argue that there is a need for a capital market, citing the existing shortage of finance both in local and hard currencies, others disagree, mentioning the immature financial reporting and fragile corporate governance systems, absence of the required legal framework, and a very weak private sector. Meanwhile, the government’s position is firm: setting up a stock market in no less than a year, if possible, before the end of 2020. EBR’s Samson Berhane investigates to find out whether the country is ready to institute a stock exchange.

Samson BerhaneMarch 4, 2020


Ethiopia assures that it will continue participating in current the US-brokered Nile dam negotiations as long as it does not harm its national interest. The country affirmed that only negotiation can resolve the current deadlock over the dam, while explaining that dropping out of the US-brokered talks will not be beneficial.

This comes just three days after the country expressed its dismay over the statement of the US that cautioned Ethiopia to refrain from filling and testing its giant dam on Nile before reaching an agreement with Sudan and Egypt.

Samson BerhaneJanuary 17, 2020


Djibouti has rejected a London Court of International Arbitration ruling that has ordered the country restore the rights of DP World to administer Doraleh Container Terminal.

The court has ordered Djibouti to restore the rights and benefits under the 2006 concession agreement to DP World and Doraleh Container Terminal within two months, or pay damages.

Samson BerhaneJanuary 13, 2020


The real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of Ethiopia, a parameter employed to measure the size of an economy, has reached ETB1.8 trillion (USD60 billion), National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE) reveals. The Bank, in its latest report published last week, disclosed that Ethiopia’s economy has recorded a nine percent growth in 2018/19, faster than the 7.7Pct expansion in the previous financial year. An improvement in industrial output, coupled with the growth of the service sector, has largely contributed for the growth registered in the past fiscal year.

Samson BerhaneJanuary 13, 2020


State of Tigray sees the highest food inflation rate amongst all regional governments and city administrations in Ethiopia, reaching as much as 23Pct last fiscal year, according to a new report published by the Central Bank. Annual food inflation rate in the Tigray increased by ten percentage points during last fiscal year from being 13Pct in 2017/18, the report says. This is largely resulted from the rise in prices of basic food items in the Region, including wheat, teff and vegetables.

Samson BerhaneJanuary 1, 2020


Buzuayehu T. Bizenu, a father of six, is a Group Chairperson of East African Holding, a de facto industrial conglomerate with 17 subsidiaries. His company is engaged in the manufacturing of fast moving consumer goods, tea processing, printing and packaging, transport, real estate, cement production, and coal mining. Although Buzuayehu has structured and re-established the company almost 25 years ago, it is his grandfather who founded the business more than a century ago, making him the third generation in a family of entrepreneurs. After his father inherited the business and diversified into milling and agriculture (coffee), his fledgling enterprise was nationalized by the Dergue regime in 1974.

While this was a major setback, the family’s dreams and aspirations were not curtailed as entrepreneurship was deeply engrained in his soul from an early age. Soon after, Buzuayehu was able to pick up after his father, although this was an extremely difficult task under communist rule. He fled to neighbouring countries to establish trading and distribution posts, opening offices in Djibouti, Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania. He moved to Ethiopia after EPRDF took power in 1991. Attracted by a favourable private sector and industrial development policy, he quickly transitioned from trading to manufacturing and agribusiness.

Samson BerhaneDecember 31, 2019


Oromia International Bank (OIB) earned ETB217 million profit from interest free banking services (IFB) in the past fiscal year. While this is the highest amongst all private banks that provide IFB services, it is 22Pct higher than 2017/18 financial year. Being the first private bank to provide IFB service, OIB’s IFB window generated a total income of ETB244 million in 2018/19, a nine percent rise compared to the preceding fiscal year, while its total expense of the same window declined by four percent to ETB27 million.

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