During the 5th national election held in 2015, the ruling Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) and its allies scored a landslide victory by winning all the seats in Parliament as well as in regional and city councils. A year after EPRDF achieved this clean sweep, however, a series of nonviolent protests sparked off in the nation, later turning deadly. Witnessing this in a country run by a government supposedly almost unanimously elected by voters just a year prior was surprising for Ethiopians and the international community alike.


Only few countries have endured continuous and crippling high inflation rates like Ethiopia has in the past 15 years. The average annual inflation rate in this period was 16.4Pct and peaked above 20Pct in 2008, 2011, and 2020. Recall that when inflation spiked in 2008, food prices in Ethiopia rose by a staggering 92Pct within a single year.
Over the last 12 months alone, general and food inflation rates rose by 20.4Pct and 23.1Pct, respectively, according to the Central Statistics Agency.


Ethiopia has been impelling for the expansion of Djiboutian ports to accommodate its mushrooming foreign trade on top of exploring alternative sea gates, including the purchase of a stake in Somalia’s Berbera port. The country is also under negotiations with Eritrea to develop the ports of Massawa and Assab. The recent establishment of a one-stop border post (OSBP) between Kenya and Ethiopia alongside the completion of the Hawassa-Moyale road project provides Ethiopia, with its heavy and increasing dependence on imports, another option with Lamu, Kenya’s second largest port after Mombasa.


Ending the conflict with Eritrea, as well as implementing reforms that strengthened public institutions and broadened the political space are among achievements of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD) administration. In addition, the homegrown economic reform agenda that outlined macroeconomic, structural, and sectoral reforms is expected to pave the way for jobs creation, poverty reduction, and inclusive growth.


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.


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.

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