Most local investors are not lured into the nation's manufacturing sector albeit its attractive incentives like favorable land lease rates, access to commercial credit, duty free imports of inputs, and generous tax breaks to both local and foreign investors. Hence, what needs to be done to boost the share of domestic investment in such sector ?
Through building some 17 industrial parks in all states , the country's manufacturing sector is expected to increase at an annual average of 24 percent and to be 8 percent of the national economy by 2020.
For Manufacturing Consultant Tesfahun Abay, the involvement of the local investors in manufacturing is insignificant comparing to service provision business . “ One of the factors that make the local investors to shy away from the sector is the ongoing profitable business of importing and distributing of foreign made goods in the country.”
He, therefore, stresses that the country first and foremost has to work on raising the awareness of local investors towards the advantages of investing in manufacturing apart from providing attractive incentives packages .“The nation has to work on human development with a view to sustaining its success stories in manufacturing as well.”
Tesfahun also underlines the need for speeding up the process of technology transfer so long as the nation wants to tempt local investors to the manufacturing.
Hunegnaw Abebaw, Local Investors' Transformation Directorate Director at Ministry of Industry , says resulting from its attractive investment incentives and over a decade double digit economic growth , the nation has been ranked as one of the best foreign and domestic investment destinations in the continent for several years by various international organizations.
Cognizant of the irreplaceable roles of local investors in developing the country's manufacturing, he indicates that the government has issued various policies and strategies to this regard, but the involvement of local investors in the sector is not as such appreciable.
“That is why the directorate together with its stakeholders is now conducting series of awareness creating campaigns towards manufacturing to local investors across the country .”
He goes to say joint efforts are underway to lure the local investors to the manufacturing “ We do not expect overnight change to this end . The nation's manufacturing sector is in its infancy stages. A lot of work need to be done in-terms of attracting local investors in manufacturing industry and the ministry has already established a directorate in charge of awaren ess creation towards manu facturing.”
Addis Ababa Chamber of Commerce Promotion Department Director Abraham Hailemariam says as the manufacturing is the largest employer of people next to agriculture in Ethiopia, the government has to support the sector providing more incentives to local investors.
In the efforts to inform the opportunities of the manufacturing sector in Ethiopia, he indicates that Addis Ababa Chamber of Commerce is working on organi zing manufacturing and techn ology fairs with local and foreign investors.
“ For instance, in the near future, over 15 South African manufacturing companies and countries from Middle East as well as India and China will take part in such trade fairs, I think this would open opportunities for local manufactures to look for joint venture.”
For his part, United Bank S.C Board Chairperson Eyesusw ork Zafu, as developing country, Ethiopia's manufacturing is growing at a sluggish pace and so it needs all round gover nment's support .
Moreover, he says stepping up local investors’ participation in manufacturing would help the nation in reallocating workers from the less productive agri culture to more productive economic activities in man ufacturing. It as well is a crucial step towards the creation of better-paying jobs, he states.
BY MENGISTEAB TESHOME
ADDIS ABABA - Debre Birhan University announced that it is going to produce herbal drugs that would help to cure various skin diseases in the near future..
A number of researchers have been carrying out researches on various herbs that the society traditionally uses to cure various diseases in all Woredas of Northern Shewa zone, University Ankober Herbal Medicine Preparation and Biodiversity Conservation Project Director Dr. Amare Ayalew told The Ethiopian Herald.
The herbs which are comprised of Eucalyptus Globules, Chamomile, Thyme and Rosemary have also passed successfully the pre-clinical trial , he said.
“Apart from producing herbal medicine in forms of oil, cream and herbal soft, efforts are being exerted in developing additional related drugs for cosmetics.”
The pre-clinical trial that was conducted on lab rats was successful and the clinical trial would take place soon, he noted.
Some 22 researchers of the university have taken training on clinical trial supervision and operations by physicians from the Black Lion Specialized Hospital, he stated.
As to him, the university is working to get Intellectual Property right for the coming herbal medicines and striving to fulfill the prerequisite to produce the drug through publishing researches conducted by its scholars.
After the establishment of Institutional Research Board (IRB), the university would produce drugs that could cure more Ethiopians suffered from skin diseases, Dr. Amare said.
Food and drug administration authority, the ministry of industry and science and technology are also working with the university in bringing notable result of the project, he stressed.
The project has been operating with strong participation of the Ankober Woreda Traditional Healers. “We would work to identify more traditional medicines for scientific experiment in the coming times.”
The university has been performing the project with 4.1 million Birr financed by the Ministry of Science and Technology.
According to him, the country needs extra effort to tap its herbal medicine potential coordinating traditional healers and pharmacists.
The university has been exerting efforts to become an excellence center in medicinal herbs research and production, Dr. Amare noted.
BY YOHANES JEMANEH
ADDIS ABABA — Ministry of Culture and Tourism said it has given top priority to activities in developing tourist attraction places in the cities and towns of the country.
The Ministry Public and International Relations Dire ctorate Director Gezahegn Abate, told to The Ethiopian Herald the cities and the towns in various parts of the nation have unique natural, and cultural tourist destinations, hence,the Ministry has been working hand in glove with all administrations of such cities and towns as well as pertinent stakeholders in benefiting communities by realizing the overall tourism development efforts of the country.
As there are immense opportunities to develop tourist destinations in the country, the ministry has been also working with respective higher learning institutions found in various parts of the nation in this end,he said.
“For instance,in developing tourism destinations, unive rsities of Gondar, Makale, Bahir Dar, Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa,Axum Hawassa and others are working in partnership with us .”
As to him , Addis Ababa is the fourth largest city in Africa, and becoming one of the must see city in Africa with all mix marks of development, tourist destination with a number of natural and cultural tourist attractions, galleries, monu ments, statues, parks, museums, forestry monasteries and mosques.
The Director also noted that the Ministry is working on strengthening the efforts of branding cities in expanding infrastructural development works like electric power supply, ICT access, building roads for each destination.
Addis Ababa culture and tourism communication affairs support work process owner Worku Mengesha for his part said the Bureau apart from erecting tourist compass maps in the various parts of the city, it has published a guide to tourist attraction in Addis Ababa and its environs . “Until now, 17 tourist compass maps have been installed and 15 additional tourist compass maps are under the construction.”
According to Gezahegn, other towns and facilities will soon get the tourist compass maps and guide both electronic and hard copy.
It is to be recalled that the nation has put a goal to attract 1.25 million foreign tourists at the end of GTPII.
BY MENGISTEAB TESHOME
ADAMA – Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources announced that it has been working to provide adequate amount of fertilizer to the increasing number of demand.
The country’s fertilizer supply has been increasing through time and Ethiopia has been importing more agricultural inputs volume during this fiscal year than the previous years spending 16 billion Birr, Ministry Agricultural Input Supply Senior Expert Belete Berhane told The Ethiopian Herald.
This year, the country has bought 15 million quintals of fertilizer, of which 10 million has already entered into the country, he said, adding the fertilizer supply has four million quintal increment than that of the 2016/17 budget year.
The farmer’s awareness in using fertilizer has also been rising time to time and the expert’s advice is significant to this end, he said.
However, the increasing number of fertilizer demand caused foreign loan shortage and the ministry is working with stakeholders to substitute import through planting fertilizer producing industries in the country, he stated.
State Minister Dr. Kaba Urgesa for his part noted that the country had been using only dap and urea fertilizers which solely gives nitrogen and phosphorus nutrients.
“But, now we are working to apply the fertilizers that almost incorporated the nutrients recommended by researchers including potash, sulfur, boron and zinc among others.”
The ministry is also working with stakeholders in providing and distributing gypsum to the farmer in the areas where the soil is highly affected by salt, he noted.
Currently, five fertilizer processing plants are working in providing various fertilizers to the farmer he said and added, the ministry also planned to plant fertilizer producing factories in the country.
As to him, the ministry also uses the Sudan port to curb shortage of fertilizer discharge space.
BY YOHANES JEMANEH
Nowadays, Ethiopia is working hard on changing its agrarian based economy to the industry driven one building world class industry and agro-parks in various states of the country in the shortest time possible. For example, some industry parks have already gone operational and others are under construction too.
But, so far inaugurated industry parks have been attracting only a number of globally known textile and apparel companies. Hence , one must ask why the domestic investment is insignificant in manufacturing sector?.
One reason could be all local investors prefer service business than the manufacturing one. This is because the manufacturing sector does not bring quick economic returns. But, it brings ever lasting prosperity and development to a given investor and country as its economic returns last for many years.
Indeed, the government and the pertinent bodies have been exerting various efforts with a view to attracting local investors in manufacturing, but, they need to do a lot in-terms of promoting the country's competitive incentives packages for these investors. in an amicable and attractive fashion than ever before.
As part of encouraging local manufacturers, the government has already mandated the development bank to offer 100 percent financing loans to purchase machines without collateral, in return ,they are expected to play a big role in replacing the imported goods and boosting the foreign trade.
Local investors also need to get involved actively in pharmaceutical manufacturers as the nation is now importing its 85 per cent medicines from various countries. The same is also true for chemical manufacturers.
For the last two decades, Ethiopia has been putting in place every necessary infrastructure in a bid to attract a large number of foreign and local investors. And also unlike many African countries, it has been allotting over 60 per cent of its budget for infrastructure development.
Apparently, without modern infrastructure networks, development is unthinkable. These days, more or less, the nation has modern highways, railways, airports, and the like. This by itself has a big role in attracting potential local investors.
Above all, day in and day out the country is also working for economic integration with neighboring countries. Therefore, sooner or later, East Africa will be a huge regional market for local manufacturers.
Also, the nation needs to exert relentless efforts in helping local manufacturers to flourish as high tech manufacturing through overcoming the challenges related to attitudinal problems and skill development in the sector.
Moreover, one must not forget that local manufacturers have pivotal role in accelerating the economic transformation and ensuring sustainable and inclusive development in the country as they create tremendous job opportunities for youth and women apart from supporting to own high tech and industrial society.
Every fellow citizen needs to bear in mind that the industrial transformation could be sustainable and accelerated when the central focus is on knowledge and technology transformation.
A number of international organizations have been providing the following policy recommendations which could contribute to the development of the manufacturing in Ethiopia: Increasing productivity through skills development. Improving access to finance for firms especially for SMEs ,Addressing binding constraints including access to land and electricity , improving tax administration and simplifying the tax system. Improving trade logistics, customs procedures and trade regulations, to promote export and FDI. Simplifying business entry regulations and processes to promote a dynamic and thriving business sector. And also using a strategic and phased approach to develop Industrial Parks based on best international practices.
All in all, the country needs to speed its industrialization to reduce poverty ,ensure fair wealth distribution and realize lower middle-income status by 2025 attracting local investors in manufacturing business than never before.
A week ago, the new Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed, 42, delivered a well-received and hopeful inaugural speech at the House of People’s Representative in Addis Ababa. Since then, almost all Ethiopians at home or abroad have been filled with great amazement because of this powerful speech. A glance at a social media and other means of mass communication also indicates that the speech has brought very significant influence on the society. Just as an American quotation anthologists and psychologist Dr. Mardy Grothe once said, “Words have incredible power. They can make people’s hearts soar,” the words of the Prime Minister have dramatically created abundant sense of hope to the citizens. From professors of communication to the laypersons, all have been touched by the power of the speech that has created sense of ‘wow’ to everybody.
The speech that took about 38 minutes carefully addressed the circumstances of every member of the community since it is full of history, politics, economy and social issues of the nation. The effectiveness of its influence on the society clearly shows that it was well researched and carefully crafted. It has established great sense of security and peace across the nation since it was delivered. Before that every member of the society was overwhelmed with sense of insecurity due to certain unrest in different parts of the nation. It became so astonishing that the prevailing tension in the heart of the citizens lost its ground soon the speech was presented. The event can serve as a turning point where the wind of peace and stability as well as new hope began to soar across the nation.
There are several reasons why this speech has brought such amazement among the audience. The content of the speech, the speaker’s inspiring character, the current political situations and the like come together to increase the uniqueness of the speech. This piece cannot present all these reasons; particularly the contents by themselves need a compressive project to deal with. Here I merely try to discuss briefly two possible reasons: the credibility the leader established and the manner of his presentation (delivery) that made this speech so powerful. Since I used to help my students to improve their presentation for more than half of a decade, I can see some techniques that make a given public speech great.
The manner of presentation has made this inaugural speech so magnificent. The speech crystallizes some of the greatest gifts of Dr. Abiy. His soaring oratory and political radical has been very evident. His speech has proved its national significance in restoring the broken public trust. Every word of his mouth has great contributions towards solving the current political constraints of the nation. In the entire content of the speech, the leader heralded the massive good news the society has been waiting for. Moreover, something glorious, responsible, respectable, responsive are the features of the speech that succinctly addresses the basic as well as fundamental issues of the citizens. The manner in which he said every sentence has charismatically influenced the audiences. He brought the speech to conclusion by filling his listener’s hearts with a hopeful and inspirational message.
The speech that has humble beginning and developed into comprehensive and inclusive thoughts ended with calling for clear and compelling action for the higher good of the nation. Using metaphorical and vivid languages, he created strong and memorable images. His purposeful repetition of words and phrases that potent and poetic can have strong lasting message for the audience.
The second reason that made this speech very magnificent is the credibility of the speaker; in other words, the legacy the leader has established in the minds of the citizens. Dr. Abiy has developed trustworthiness among the society while he was carrying his responsibility effectively at different positions he served for more than a decade. He has been a change agent at every organization he was entrusted. One of the text books on public relations I used at a college states, “Credibility is directly related to the audience’s perception of the speaker’s competence and character.” Since the citizens are well aware of Dr. Abiy’s competence and leadership skills as well as character, they were waiting his speech with utmost expectation.
The public strongly believed that Dr. Abiy has developed skillful leadership that the current situation of the country demands. He was not only effectively leading in the past but also he has been making adequate preparations for the higher responsibility. That is why the people who are well aware to discern the proper leader have put trust in him to lead the nation.
In short, the inaugural speech delivered on April 2 by the new Prime Minister has caused a political breakthrough for the nation because of these two reasons and others. It seems that it will have exceeding abundant lasting effects in the political circumstances of the nation and beyond.
BY WAKUMA KUDAMA
Ethiopia is on implementing a Climate Resilient Green Economy (CRGE) since the outset of the strategy. And the nation continues representing the voice of Africa in various global climate forums. The nation is succeeding with climate smart green economy growth following its endeavors to protect the environment. The country prioritizes green economic growth through building mega hydropower dams, generating and harnessing geothermal energy as well as utilizing wind power in rural households.
The nation is becoming a role model through promoting environmentaly healthy economic system. Wind and water power stations constructions, electric power operating railways construction in the city and from the capital city, Addis Ababa, to Djibouti as well as other pro climate projects are the main portrayals of the country’s success for building a climate resilient green economy.
In an exclusive interview with The Ethiopian Herald Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Climate Change Negotiation Director Debasu Bayleyegn said that the nation is registering a promising result in building a climate resilient green economy. The transportation sector is the prominent sector that showcases the country’s endeavors regarding curbing carbon emission, he added.
Smart parking constructions, only bicycle transportation ways in the city as well as the finalizing Addis-Djibouti rail ways are the manifestations towards succeeding climate resilient green economy development, he said.
Addis Ababa Light Railway transportation line running from the city centre to East and West of the city opened on 20 September 2015 is contributing its part for the nation’s green economy development. It paves ways for facilitating the city’s transportation system hugely and advanced the green economy development strategies of the country. Further to this the introduction of modern rail way to the city plays a tangible role in national image building and promotes the good name of the capital of Africa.
Industrial sector is the leading sector towards causing climate changes, posing its hardships and adverse impact on nature and human being. The smokes and wastes outflow from such industries is the major contributing factor towards the exacerbating environmental hazards.
According to Debasu, the industrial parks constructing across the country are pro-environment and community that supports climate resilient green economy development strategy tremendously.
“By default the situations of the industrial park is appropriate to curb environmental pollutions in various ways. The combination of different industrial factories together would be better to reuse its outputs and unnecessary wastes in one location after recycling it together.”
Further to this, constructing such industrial parks in different corners of the country would be important to follow up the factory’s activities closely and control any situations doubtable of posing challenges on environmental healthiness, he said.
He emphasized that huge industrial factories operating in cement, leather and textiles sectors should utilize energy efficient technological instruments to save power consumption and reduce carbon emission.
He further said that the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change Forest division targets reducing more than seven million tons of carbon emissions. To achieve this target the coordination of every ministerial sector offices has to establish and organize a climate resilient green economy unit to mainstream, work on and meet the objectives of the national carbon emission reduction strategy.
This year international donors have donated 65 million USD to the ministry to facilitate and strengthen the national objectives of building a climate resilient green economy.
He finally called up on every citizen to be committed about protecting the environment and engage more in the ways to succeed the country’s national goal of maintaining sustainable green economy without harming nature. Thus, everyone has a responsibility to be part of the mass public mobilizations in mass planting of tree seedlings, soil and water rehabilitations as well as be actively engaged in environmental protection activities.
To sum up, if one segment of the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change plans achieving this target the result would be more promising while every minister offices and private organizations cooperate together towards carbon emissions reductions. Keeping the environment free from pollution is the responsibility of everyone and should never be left only to the ministry. Nurturing best experiences is also fundamental to guarantee a climate resilient green economy growth.
BY TEWODROS KASSA
Youths are regarded as engines of development in every aspect of nation’s socioeconomic progress. As it is the median age of a people, when they start to think about self actualization and become a ready work force, youths start to look for different options that can enhance their economic life at this stage.
Countries also strive to use this advantage to transform their national aspirations by effectively utilizing this work force. Ethiopia has also prioritized creating employment to benefit youths in its entire development plan. As the country working to achieve the transformation of its economy into industrialization, it has also made several programs that can ensure benefits of citizens and countries interest of industrialization through specializing on different sectors.
For this among different specialization of industry, what the nation has been investing in and economists are suggesting is the advancement of the manufacturing industry as a key sector. For countries like Ethiopia that has large number of population with majority working force and a plenty of diversified natural resources, manufacturing sector is highly preferable.
Of course advancement in manufacturing industry has a number of benefits for country. In addition to creating employment opportunity, it significantly helps in substituting import and increasing export of the country. In order to ensure this, different policy and strategy directions have been established with their respective institutions.
Federal Small and Medium Manufacturing Industry Agency (FSMMIA) Deputy Director General, Kahsya G/Medihn said, “There are different institutions that are established for job creation, however manufacturing industries are the special ones in advancing both citizens employment opportunity and national transformation.”
He emphasized a number of opportunities dedicated under this agency, especially for peoples who want to be an entrepreneur in manufacturing sector. The sector is vast, have enormous untapped potentials and can be developed in the whole parts of the country, according to him.
According to him, the policy and strategy of this agency encourages the expansion of small and medium manufacturing initiatives at woreda and kebele level. By doing so it also aims to bring job creation, entrepreneurship opportunities at the grass root level.
Unlike the past programs and other institutions, FSMMIA does not necessarily require youths to be organized to get the agency’s support; any interested person can be beneficial in all its programs. The agency has already established incubation centre, where youths can get trainings on both technical and theoretical knowledge in their interest areas of work.
This includes different manu facturing machinery operating system training, business plan development and management trainings. Not only this, working with other financial institutions such as Development Bank of Ethiopia, Addis Micro Finance, and other stakeholders, the agency facilitates ways for the beneficiaries to get financial assistance, machinery and other equipment.
The policy also dictates administrative organs until the woreda level to provide land for production and selling areas for peoples want to work in the field of manufacturing. Kahsay also noted that the target groups of the program are identified as successful farmers, graduate youths, peoples transformed from micro enterprises, construction workers, investors working in trade and service activities, Diasporas leaving abroad and different women association. According to him, the agency requires only their business idea and support letter from aforementioned administration offices.
There are a lot of unexploited options awaiting these people, Kahsay said. “They can work in food processing, textile, skin and leather production, construction inputs and many other manufacturing areas.”
When the beneficiaries finish the training, they are expected to bring their request of machinery specification with twenty percent working capital, in order to get machinery import. According to the policy when they fulfill this, the government agency which is Development Bank will import the requested machinery for them. The twenty percent of working capital is required only to make sure the person’s capacity to continue the business, Kahsay added. FSMMA Director General Asfaw Abebe for his part noted that countries like India are working highly in this way and became successful. The incubation centre of the agency is also built in support of the government of India. He also added, “If we can effectively practice the policy, Ethiopia can be more successful.”
Ethiopia has a big potential in this aspect. “We have resources, youths ready for work, market opportunity, and also national capacity,” Asfaw added.
However, even though we have all these opportunities and policy directions, several youths are not benefiting from this programme. According to Kahsay, due to lack of support and conscious leadership at wereda and subcity level, only few youths sent to the incubation center.
Therefore, both Asfaw and Kahsay called up on administrative organs, sub cities, regional offices and woreda administrations to remove any constraints that retard the effectiveness of agencies to benefit the youth. “By doing so we can ensure the development and transformation of our national economy and we can also show the light of role of youths in our national success,” Kahsay said.
BY YOSEF KETEMA
Lucy succeed in taking first leg advantage
The Ethiopian women’s national football team thrashed the Libyan side 8-0 in the first away leg in the African Women’s Cup qualifiers.
This is seen as a great leap forward to reach the African Cup finals.
The national side Coach Selam Zeray said that this is a good beginning. “We are determined to reach the finals this time but we didn’t expect such a wide margin win over the Libyan side. We had the experience of taking part in the African Cup. We are hopeful to qualify for the 2011 Ghana African Cup,” she said.
Ethiopia participated in the 1993 African women’s Cup for the first time and Libya had no history of participation in the continent’s big women’s football event.
The 21st Russia World Cup draws to a start
The world’s greatest sports bonanza, the 21st Russia World Cup, is only 65 days away from the official kick off day.
It is amazing to hear that 1.07 million tickets have been sold in the span of one month. Despite the political pressure from the western countries headed by Britain, the people of the United States of America, Argentina, Colombia, Mexico and Brazil are among the top six ranking countries in the parade of ticket buying. The Russian people are, of course, on top of the list.
Ethiopia is represented in this big global event by international referee Bamlak Tesseama. He is one of the 36 referees assigned in this World Cup. Africa has six referees including Bamlak in this World Cup.
Russia is expected to receive over 3 million tourists from around the world during the world Cup. The issue of security which matters most during the World Cup has been given special consideration.
FIFA has also confirmed that there is no visible sign of security breakdown.
AACF concludes first round Coca Cola Cup cycling race
The Addis Ababa Cycling Federation, AACF, concluded the first round of the Addis Coca Cola cycling race on Friday at the Addis Ababa stadium. The final race was organized in connection to the Ethiopian Good Friday.
As usual the AACF has awarded sheep, commonly called Mukit, and money prize to the winners.
As it was last week the newly formed Berhanena Selam Enterprise cycling side continued their domination with a spectacular sweeping victory on Friday.
A week earlier in the Coca Cola Addis Ababa cycling race that took place at Tsion Hotel-Wingate venue in the men’s 42.9km course race Biniam Solomon of Berhanena Selam and his compatriots Haile Awol and Samson Mintesnot had a sweeping victory.
This kind of sweeping victory in their debut was little expected at the start but Berhanena Selam did it for the fourth time in a row.
The Addis Ababa Coca Cola cycling race is sponsored by Coca Cola East Africa Bottling Company.
By Solomon Bekele