South Korea pledges to strengthen its development cooperation with Ethiopia in the areas of education, health, rural development, capacity building, infrastructure and other streams.
Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) Deputy Country Director Kim Jun Su tells to The Ethiopian Herald that Korea involves in various development activities in Ethiopia.
Particularly, the Agency works in the area of education as it is by far the most significant sector to nation's long term development schemes, the Deputy Country Director stresses.
“We have been giving much of our supports to different parts of the country. For instance, we are involved in Tigrai, Amhara, Oromia and Southern Nations Nationalities and People's State in the areas of health, education, energy and rural development streams and we are working to outreach Agency's programs in other parts of the nation,” the Deputy Director elaborates.
KOICA Country Director Madam Doh Young Ah says that abundant natural resources are necessary for economic growth. However, human resource development is far more necessary and much more important. “South Korea has very little natural resources; but because, it worked diligently in its human resource development, it has reached where it is now. This is an experience that should be well taken by other nations in the world,” she further stresses.
Noting that KOICA has given scholarship for over 1300 Ethiopian officials, experts and academicians in various training and post graduate programs in Korea, the Director says, this year alone the Agency has provided 28 master fellowship awards.
As part of this, Korea will continue providing country specific, regional and global short term courses and masters scholarship opportunities to Ethiopian experts focusing on health, education, rural development, capacity building, infrastructure and others, she reassures.
The Country Director further says KOICA needs to further strengthen its partnership and long standing relationship of the two countries. [
Ethiopia is currently in similar development path like that of South Korea's experience 40 years ago. And very strong determination is required from all stakeholders to sustain the ongoing progress in the nation through building human resource capital in an effective and highly productive manner, the Director capitalizes.
KOICA has put an emphasis on training and technical cooperation as part of human capital development to the nation to assist Ethiopia's development program, she says.
KOICA Ethiopia Club President Fantahun Belew on his part says that Ethiopia has been experiencing rapid economic growth since the past decade and a half. To sustain this growth and transform its economy, the nation has a lot to learn from South Korea, he suggests.
In stance of this therefore, South Korea's support in various streams such as ICT, is crucial, he said adding “We are fortunate to have South Korea's support in capacity building and ICT development.”
Management and Business Consultant Zinare Mamo says for his part that Ethiopia has a lot to learn from South Korea as the nation has developed socially and economically from an extreme level of poverty in short period of time.
According to Zinare, focused planning and conducting regular revisions, high commitment to meet targets, strict work culture, strong monitoring and evaluation mechanisms, focus on science and technology are among the areas that Ethiopia should learn from South Korea.
This global superstar nation with the third largest market economy in Asia and the 13th largest market in the world has a lot to share to the ongoing development of Ethiopia, Zinare opines.
Abrehet Temesgen is a farmer from Tigrai State of Kushet Mi Mekden, Mesebo Station in Enderta woreda. She visited South Korea three years ago and witnessed Korea's' farming experience.
According to her she has learned a lot from Korean modern agriculture and adopted new technologies in her farm plot which enable her yield better.
The Agency is supporting the community in her village with provision of clean potable water, health and hygiene, building private toilets, constructing roads and small dams, as well as introducing renewable energy and distributing stoves, she witnesses.
The total volume of Official Development Assistance (ODA) which has been channeled through KOICA to Ethiopia for the past 22 years amounted to be closed 149 mln USD.
The relationship and cooperation between Ethiopia and South Korea has historical foundation when Ethiopia sent troops to Korea during the Korean war.
BY YARED GEBREMEDEN