Land of Tomorrow – Aired November 2012
Ethiopia, where past and present meet. Located in the Horn of Africa at the crossroads of Europe, Africa and Asia, Ethiopia is Africa’s oldest independent nation. It was once known as Abyssinia, a great empire that ruled this strategic region 3,000 years ago.
Ethiopia is also a modern nation, as Addis Ababa’s rapidly evolving skyline reflects. Ethiopia has a stable, liberalized economy that has achieved an average growth of over 6% per year for several years.
Ethiopia offers preferential access to the EU and the US markets as well as to the 18 other countries and some 400 million consumers in COMESA, the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa.
Ethiopia also has the second-largest population in sub-Saharan Africa, offering a huge domestic market with rising purchasing power.
Investors in Ethiopia can count low-cost labor; rich natural resources; and a business-friendly government that welcomes the chance to form public-private partnerships.
Ethiopia’s motto is “Africa’s Link to the World,” and to enhance the country’s position as a trade hub for Europe, Africa and Asia, the Ethiopian government has spent around US$44 billion on transport-infrastructure development over the past decade.
Ethiopia is also rapidly developing its air transport services. The country has three international and 18 domestic airports, and international flights link Ethiopia with over 45 cities on four continents. Addis Ababa International is steadily improving its facilities and now has a new passenger terminal.
Air transport growth is closely linked to the economic development of Ethiopia.
Landlocked Ethiopia’s trade window on the world is Djibouti Port, which is ideally located at the crossroads of East and West, near where the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean meet.
Djibouti Port is expanding its facilities to handle growing trade to and from Ethiopia, its biggest client, and Ethiopia is streamlining its transport links to the port by building a new 5,000-mile railway over the route with the support of India and China.
Along with upgrading its transport infrastructure, Ethiopia is modernizing its telecom network to keep pace with rising demand. The government has invested massively in rolling out national fiber backbone and wireless access networks, and has earmarked an additional US$4 billion for telecom investment between 2007 and 2012.
But a lot of problems still have to be solved. For this to happen, the Ethiopian government is counting on foreign investors.
Internet access in Ethiopia will soon be much faster thanks to the efforts of Chinese enterprise ZTE, which is installing a new network that can handle up to 16 million customers, compared to the current 900,000-user capacity. The company is hailing Ethiopia for its positive political and economic environment.
Ethiopia is working hard to modernize its industrial sector and step up the pace of its exports. Ethiopia’s agriculture sector contributes almost half the country’s GDP
Agriculture is seen as having strong development potential given adequate investment.
Ethiopia’s leading manufacturing industries are food processing, beverages, textiles, leather, chemicals, metals processing and cement. In 2010, Ethiopia exported a total of US$1.7 billion to markets all over the world, particularly China, Germany, Saudi Arabia, the US, the Netherlands, Sudan and Belgium.
The country is looking for investors interested in a broad range of sectors.
Key export-earners in fiscal year 2010-2011 were the coffee sector, the leather sector, and the textiles sector, which earned over US$60 million, an impressive 168% increase over the previous fiscal period.
One of the largest foreign direct investments in Ethiopia to date, Ayka Textile & Investment Group, choose Ethiopia as the site of its new integrated textiles factory, the biggest operation of its kind in sub-Saharan Africa
For this sector, Ethiopia also wants to attract investors from Asia.
Ethiopia imported around US$7 billion in 2010, mainly food and live animals, petroleum and petroleum products, chemicals, machinery, motor vehicles, cereals and textiles. Ethiopia has steadily expanded its trade network and China is now the country’s top trade partner.
My Ethiopia , a personal look at what makes Ethiopia special to the people that live there.
The construction sector has been a key driver of the Ethiopian economy for several years as the government’s “Growth and Transformation Plan” moves forward. Much of the building construction has been centered on Addis Ababa, whose skyline is punctuated by giant cranes and whose borders are being expanded as new projects come on stream.
The private sector, both local and foreign, is playing a key role in the current construction boom, although more complex projects are usually handled by foreign companies that have the necessary equipment, technologies and expertise. Ethiopian firms that can offer skilled labor, proven know-how and local knowledge are increasingly forming win-win partnerships with foreign players to complete major projects.
Flintstone Engineering, a 100% Ethiopian company, illustrates the potential of Ethiopia’s private sector. The first Ethiopian construction firm to earn ISO 9001 certification, Flintstone is a leader in building construction as well as in road and water infrastructure projects.
The government has placed a high priority on stimulating foreign investment in Ethiopia’s construction sector, which can not only contribute to the country’s economic development and investment appeal but can also create thousands of new jobs. Ethiopia is building its future with the help of foreign partners.
Here are the top five attractions to visit in Ethiopia.
At number five stand the different crafts markets in Addis Ababa. Here you can find high quality souvenirs from all over Ethiopia. Look at the lovely way they are produced, the same like centuries ago.
Number four on our list is the National Museum, with the fascinating remains of the best known predecessor of mankind, the Lucy skeleton. Numerous other exhibits make a visit to the museum more than worthwile.
All over Ethiopia you can join in for a performance of traditional dances. This occupies the third place in own top five. Learn how the different tribes have their own ways of expressing themselves. And last but not least, try and taste the delicious local food.
At number two we have put the Ethiopian coffee ceremony. This lengthy event forms an essential part of the daily life in Ethiopia.You will get acquainted with the legendary hospitality of the Ethiopian people.
And finally, this is the number one on our list. Go and relax at the Kuriftu Resort and Spa, at one hour drive from the capital. The place is called ‘the little gem of Ethiopia’, and with a reason. You will enjoy luxury and beauty, in a friendly environment.
Proud symbols of the religious past and present of Ethiopia are spread all over the country. Three major religions are represented here. You’ll find Christians, Muslims and Jews in Ethiopia.
History is everywhere in Ethiopia. Its area is considered to be the cradle of humanity. Remains are found of an early homo sapiens, dating back as far as 400.000 years ago. But the most spectacular find is without any doubt the bones of Australopithecus ‘Lucy’, who is estimated to have lived more than 3 million years ago.
Tourists can fully enjoy Ethiopian culture, through music and dance performances. Its appearance is very diverse, representing the different ethnic groups out of which Ethiopia consists.
There are numerous lodging possibilities throughout the country. A lot of them are situated near idyllic locations and unforgettable sceneries.
Thanks to the dense airline network in Ethiopa all the tourist destinations are easily accessible.
An exciting mix of past and present.
A stable economy.
A rich cultural heritage.
Outstanding natural beauty.
Exceptional investment potential.
Ethiopia is truly a land of wonders waiting to be discovered.