The past three years have been a time of considerable social unrest and political instability in Ethiopia. Once the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) led coalition of the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) made way to Abiy Ahmed’s reformist government, social unrest has sprung up in all corners of the country. A large number of people have lost their lives while millions became internally displaced.


One fourth of the global currencies have values of more than 100 units per dollar, according to UN Operational Rates of Exchange on October 01, 2020. Most of the countries that have strong currencies against the dollar are liberal economies that have positive relationships with Western countries and the Breton woods institutions, while economies that have the weakest currencies are by large labeled as socialist countries.



Ireechaa is one of the centuries-old thanksgiving celebrations in Ethiopia. Nature adorns itself with its trade mark color of green and sprinkles colors from the rainbow over that background during spring. Spring also marks the end of the gloomy days of winter and heralds the beginning of the era of beauty. The Oromo people come together to praise Waaqaa, the Almighty God, for renewing life and refreshing nature. Embellished in cultural attire and flowers, they ceremonially march to the Hora, water body, near them.



The liberal free mar-ket economy Ethiopia adopted under the reign of the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Demo-cratic Party (EPRDF) has been a start of the growth of the private sector. Under such an economy, major public and private compa-nies (especially those operating in finance) access the bulk of money pumped into the market. Then, this huge money trickles down under small pours to the society at large. As has been evident in cities that have made the transi-tion to metropolitan status, the skyline of Addis has welcomed high rising buildings serving as the headquarters of the elite com-panies in the country.


Ethiopia’s foreign currency problem is a constant in an otherwise inconsistent socio-economic and political conditions of the past three years. Although various administrations devised different mechanisms to alleviate the foreign currency problem, a lasting solution still eludes. Therefore, the measures taken have proved to be short term remedies that only put a stop to further escalations of the problem. Under such conditions of ever-present foreign currency problem, managing the meager foreign currency resources at hand should be of utmost priority. Sector and policy based prioritization of activities to allocate foreign currency to should be pursued actively. It is common knowledge that petroleum and pharmaceuticals imports are said to be prioritized in allocating foreign currency because of the social and economic impacts the products could muster.


The Blue Nile is an everlasting bond between riparian countries. For millennia, the river amassed water from upper riparian countries and provided Sudan and Egypt a life line. It has, however, been the Egyptians who relied heavily on the longest river in the world. The Greeks even called Egypt “the Gift of the Nile.” Considering Ethiopia contributes 85Pct of the Nile waters, it would be logical to say that ‘Egypt is the gift of Ethiopia.’ Despite its tremendous share of the Nile waters, Ethiopia has never used the river. On the other hand, Egypt does not contribute a drop to the river; however, it claims to have historic use rights that should not been questioned.


According to the AfDB report released in June 2020, only 15 African countries have foreign currency reserves that cover their import for over five months. These countries either have oil resource or they have small import proportion. The African average is 3.2 months. ‘Countries with low foreign currency reserve will have less room to import medical equipment under the covid19 era’, according to the report.


Acquisition of Fixed Assets

Buying houses from real estate developers incur 15Pct Value Added Tax and six percent title deed transfer fee of an actual price tag. Additionally, real estate developers take more time to deliver housing units which further escalate cost of construction that ultimately push price tag further.

This makes houses built by real estate companies more expensive for the vast majority of Addis Ababans. As a result, house buyers have been looking for affordable options.


Ethiopia is currently undertaking a partial privatization of ethio telecom. The plan of the government is to maintain 55Pct of the stake while selling 40Pct of the company to a global telecom operator. It aims to sell the remaining 5Pct to the general public. The government has also expressed its intention to license two private telecom operators. Accordingly, 12 foreign multinational telecom operators have expressed interest for both opportunities.

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