Ethiopian Foreign Exchange Shortage Will Last Years-Prime Minister

Enterprise Television- Ethiopian Foreign Exchange Shortage Will Last Years

Ethiopia’s new Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed, on Monday said that a foreign exchange shortage will last for years and more cooperation with the private sector is essential to solving it.

He addressed the local business community at a session of more than two hours in a hotel in the Ethiopian capital.

Ethiopia has recorded average annual economic growth of about 10 percent for the past decade, the fastest in Africa. But foreign investors and local businesses complain that the severe hard currency shortages are stifling the private sector.

The International Monetary Fund said in January that Ethiopia’s foreign reserves at the end of the last fiscal year stood at $3.2 billion, less than what it spends on imports in two months.

Despite the high economic growth in the country, the country of about 100 million people is heavily dependent on imports.

The IMF said export revenues last year were largely unchanged despite volume growth as global agricultural commodity prices remained low and exports from manufacturing, following the start of an industrialization push that has just begun.

 

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