Kiya AliMay 15, 2020


In the current dynamic business environment where technology changes quickly and customer demand escalates, staff training plays a crucial role to increase productivity, improve efficiency and meet customer expectations. This is especially true for financial institutions operating in Ethiopia under dynamic and volatile business environment. To facilitate this, the National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE) in 2016 instructed banks and other financial institutions to spend two percent of their expenses, excluding capital expenditure, on human resource development. However, financial institutions failed to live up to expectations initially. In the 2017/18 fiscal year, seven banks failed to invest two percent of their expenditure that totally amounts close to ETB40 million on staff training. Through time, financial institutions began to realize the importance of training and started to give their employees frequent trainings. However, some still have doubts on the quality and efficiency of the training. EBR’s Kiya Ali reports. 

Kiya AliMay 15, 2020


In developing countries like Ethiopia, where the majority of the population is small scale farmers and pastoralists, livestock and crop insurances play a vital role in minimizing the risk of climate shock and drought. However, livestock and crop insurance remains a luxury in Ethiopia. Even though livestock and crop insurance policies were introduced in Ethiopia 20 years ago by the state owned Ethiopian Insurance Corporation, the number of beneficiaries is insignificant. Currently, there are only three insurance companies that provide livestock and crop insurance in the country. The situation is getting worse when it comes to micro insurance since it still remains in pilot testing stage dependent on aid from foreign NGOs. EBR’s Kiya Ali spoke with various stakeholders to shed light on the reasons behind.

Kiya AliApril 15, 2020


Building a strong labor force without vibrant technical and vocational education and training (TVET) is nothing but impossible. Accepting its importance for the enhancement of the economy, the government has drafted a strategy a decade ago by introducing an outcome-based TVET system, though it is largely supply driven. However, attitudinal problems have discouraged many students from joining TVETs, while graduates of which are unable to match their skills with the demands of the economy. EBR’s Kiya Ali reports.

Ermias MulugetaApril 15, 2020


Ethiopia has embraced platform-based businesses very recently. Though late, many platform-based tech businesses, including taxi hailing apps, mobile money operators, and e-commerce apps, have opened over the past two years, thanks to the growth in the number of internet and smart phone users. This has connected buyers with sellers and facilitated transactions and communications amongst individuals and groups. But government’s failure to understand tech disruption is costing developers and holding the sector from growing, as EBR’s Ermias Mulugeta reports.

Ermias MulugetaMarch 15, 2020


Although Addis Ababa is not new to clinical laboratories, their steep rise in number over the past decade has been extra-ordinary. Encouraged by the growth in demand for such services, investors are now more interested in spending their money on setting up these labs. The road to success, however, has been a bumpy one. Despite their soaring numbers, experts say they are still too few considering the population of the country. EBR’s Ermias Mulugeta explores.

Kiya AliMarch 15, 2020


Over the past two decades, deposits mobilized by commercial banks have skyrocketed more than 300 times, thanks to the massive expansion strategies that they have adopted. Such growth does not, however, mean a boost in financial inclusion. About three-fourths of the Ethiopian population remains unbanked. To make matters worse, the rise in the cost of living, which has forced the real interest rate to remain in the below zero territory, is already discouraging both the banked and unbanked population from depositing their money in banks, especially in urban areas. As a result, the contribution of saving towards the economy remains low, and is further exacerbated by the inflationary pressure that is eating the disposable incomes of citizens. EBR’s Kiya Ali explores.

Ashenafi EndaleMarch 15, 2020

New Trend in Present Day Ethiopia

Regional governments are waking up and responding to burning economic issues. Unlike the top-down economic command chain under the former centralized government, regions have started strategizing on how to tap into and benefit from the huge opportunities in the economy. To end this and in contrast to trends of the past decade, they have set up separate offices for international relations and have started dealing with neighboring countries and non-regional towns. While such practices are welcomed by those calling for the economic sovereignty of states, it is feared that this would further sour the relations between the central and regional governments. EBR’s Ashenafi Endale writes.

Kiya AliFebruary 15, 2020


Once home to emperors of the imperial times of Ethiopia, and later serving as a torture facility for Dergue regime, Unity Park has become the talk of the town since its opening three months ago. Financed by the United Arab Emirates, the construction of the Park cost more than USD160 million. The park displays what Ethiopia looked like during the 19th and 20th centuries along with Ethiopia’s great and recent emperors, including Emperor Menelik II and Emperor Haile Selassie, both of whom are featured with life-size waxwork statues. It also features the post-1991 political works of EPRDF-led government in the form of sculptures in the garden, representing the nine ethnic-based regional states. EBR’s Kiya Ali, who visited the park last month, explores.

Kiya AliFebruary 15, 2020


For an Ethiopian who has not been there before, groups of people who play music loudly in the middle of sidewalks and colorful matatus are distinct characteristics of Kenya’s capital, Nairobi. A Pentecostal preaching the Bible on the side of the road, long queues for transportation, and deafening music from boutiques, on the other hand, are commonalities the city holds with the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa. EBR’s Kiya Ali, who visited Nairobi last month, explores.

Ashenafi EndaleFebruary 15, 2020


Not more than 10 oil suppliers were operational in Ethiopia a decade ago. Now that is just history. The number has now tripled, reaching 33 as of December 2019. Not only this, the ownership structure of these companies has also changed greatly. While oil suppliers established a decade ago were largely owned by foreigners or big corporate, they are now being replaced by locals. But making a profit and staying afloat has not been easy for the majority of them, largely because of the low profit margin set by the government and shortage of forex needed to import lubricants and bitumen. EBR’s Ashenafi Endale explores.

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