Ethiopia’s imports amounted to USD14.1 billion in 2020, 13.9Pct lower than in 2016 and 9.3Pct lower than in 2019 and 2020. Based on average exchange rates for 2020, the Ethiopian Birr has depreciated 60.7Pct against the US dollar since 2016 and by 7Pct between 2019 and 2020. Imports paid in relatively stronger US dollars are thus more expensive for Ethiopian buyers.

Frontier technologies are being used to provide services via digital platforms that have spurred the creation of a ‘gig economy’. Some of this work is locally based, but there is also ‘cloud work’ that can be performed anywhere via the Internet. Using, adopting, and adapting frontier technologies requires sufficient ICT infrastructure, especially since AI, IoT, big data, and blockchain are internet-based technologies.

According to the United Nations Environment Program’s (UNEP) 2021 Food Waste Index Report, a total of around 931 million tons of food is annually wasted globally, of which 61Pct is at the household, 26Pct at the food service, and 13Pct at the retail level. In fact, the report stated the veracity of global household estimates is medium to low. Food waste is food (including drink) and associated inedible parts removed from the human food supply chain in the following sectors: manufacturing of food products (under certain circumstances); food retail; food service; and households. “Removed from the human food supply chain” means one of the following end destinations: landfill, controlled combustion, sewer, litter/ discards/ refuse, co/ anaerobic digestion, compost / aerobic digestion or land application.

The UN projects average world GDP growth at 2.7Pct in 2021, up from 2.5Pct in 2020 and 2.3Pct in 2019—a ten-year low since the 2008 global financial crisis. The pickup in global activity will likely be driven by somewhat faster growth in developing regions, where several large economies are expected to recover from adverse shocks. East Asia remains the world’s fastest growing region.

Source: Mo Ibrahim Foundation, The Sustainable Development Goals Center for Africa. Sustainable Development Solutions Network

In the 2020 Africa SDG Index and Dashboards Report, most of the 17 SDG goals have witnessed serious setbacks, mainly due to COVID-19.

The slowdown of domestic economic activity translates into revenue shortfalls. The financing gap for SDGs in Africa that was already large is expected to widen, increasing the fiscal vulnerability of African governments. Without financial resources, sustainable development is elusive.

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.

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