A Week in the Horn 22.3.2019


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News in Brief
The Prime Minister on official visits to Qatar and the UAE
President Guelleh in Somalia: inaugurates new embassy 
Implementation of South Sudan’s Peace Agreement Progressing - ‘Slowly but Surely’
The 6th Ethiopian-Tunisian Joint Ministerial Commission meeting in Tunis
The Diplomatic Community briefed on the tragic accident of Flight ET-302 
Ethiopia takes part in Pu’er City’s 2nd China International Specialty Coffee Expo

News in Brief
Ethiopia

Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed made official visits on Tuesday this week (March 19) to Doha, Qatar, where he held talks with Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani, and to Abu Dhabi, UAE for talks with Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces on Wednesday (March 20). The Ethiopian delegation included State Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mrs. Hirut Zemene. (See article)

Minister of Transport Ms. Dagmawit Mogus and State Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Markos Tekle briefed the diplomatic community at the weekend on the progress of the investigation and government’s activities. (See article) 

The 6th Ethiopian-Tunisian Joint Ministerial Commission meeting was held on Thursday last week (March 14) in Tunis. The meeting was co-chaired by Mrs. Hirut Zemene, Sate Minister of the Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia and Hatem Ferjani, Secretary of State of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Charge of Economic Diplomacy of Tunisia. (See article)

Dr. Hirut Kassaw, Minister of Culture and Tourism, has been in the UK this week. Following discussions between Ambassador Fesseha Shawel, Ethiopia’s Ambassador to the UK and the Director of the UK’s National Army Museum, Brigadier Justin Maciejewski, she accepted the hand-over to the Government of Ethiopia of locks of hair belonging to Emperor Tewodros II on Wednesday (March 20). These were taken from Emperor Tewodros after he committed suicide rather than surrender to the invading British army in April 1868 at the battle of Maqdala. Dr. Hirut Kassaw and her delegation also visited the resting place of the remains of Prince Alemayehu, son of Emperor Tewodros II at Windsor where she laid a wreath. She repeated the request for the remains of Prince Alemayehu to be repatriated to Ethiopia, asking for her request to be passed on to all concerned bodies so that it could be addressed as soon as possible.

Minister of Culture and Tourism, Dr. Hirut signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the British Library on behalf of the Ethiopian National Archives Agency on Wednesday (March 20). This will allow the two institutions to foster greater collaboration, research, capacity building and knowledge exchange. During her visit, Dr. Hirut viewed a selection of the Library’s extensive Ethiopian manuscript collection, now being digitalized. Dr. Hirut formally requested the return of the manuscripts to Ethiopia.

Ethiopia and Czech Republic held a bilateral political consultation on Thursday this week (March 21). State Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Markos Tekle underlining the Czech Republic as a historic partner of Ethiopia, stressed the two countries should further maximize their huge potential for enhanced cooperation. He called on investors from the Czech Republic to invest in Ethiopia’s industrial parks and for it to support the ongoing reforms in Ethiopia, particularly in areas including institutional capacity building. The Czech Republic’s State Minister of Foreign Affairs, Martin Tlapa, said Czech companies were keen to invest in Ethiopia in the health and manufacturing sectors. He commended Ethiopia’s key role in the maintenance of regional peace and security and its progressive refugee policy.

State Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Aklilu Hailemichael opened the 2nd Ethiopian-UAE Business Forum this week on Wednesday (March 20). It was attended by members of the 75-strong UAE commercial delegation in Ethiopia this week, attended the Forum and the UAE pavilion at the International Trade Exhibition taking place this week. (March 21-2). (See article) 

An Ethiopian delegation, led by the Speaker of the House of Federation, Yalew Abate is attending the 134 Inter-Parliamentary Union meeting being held in Lusaka, Zambia, this week March 19-23. 

A delegation from the Ethiopian Embassy in Beijing participated in the 2nd China International Specialty Coffee Expo which took place last week from Tuesday to Sunday (March 12-17) in Pu’er City, the “Coffee Capital” of China. (See article) 

The Ethiopian Embassy in Berlin presented “Opportunities in Ethiopia: An introduction to Industrial Park Development” at the Europe, Middle East and Africa Import and Export Trade Fair (EMEA) this week in Berlin, highlighting the aim of becoming Africa’s manufacturing hub by 2025 and the role of industrial parks. Eight Ethiopian companies and three private exhibitors are taking part in the fair.

The House of People’s Representatives formally ratified Ethiopia’s membership of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) on Thursday this week (March 21).

The World Travel and Tourism Council’s latest annual review identifies Travel and Tourism in Ethiopia in 2018 as a major success story, recording the highest level of growth, 48.6%, of any country in the world. Tourism, it says, contributed US$7.4 billion to the country’s economy, an increase of US$2.2billion on 2017, and represented 9.4% of the total economy. The Council’s research compares figures across 185 countries. 
Djibouti
President Ismail Omar Guelleh made a two-day state visit to Somalia last weekend (March 16-17). Heading a high-level delegation, he held talks with President Mohamed Abdullahi and Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khayre, and inaugurated the newly built Djibouti Embassy in Mogadishu as well visiting Djibouti soldiers serving in AMISOM at Belet Weyne. (See article) 
Eritrea
Foreign Minister Osman Saleh and Presidential Adviser Mr. Yemane Ghebreab made a three-day official working visit to Somaliland on Monday (March 18). 
The UN Human Rights Committee concluded the interactive dialogue and review of Civil and Political Rights in Eritrea on Wednesday last week (March 13). 
Somalia
President Mohamed Abdullahi welcomed President Ismail Omar Guelleh of Djibouti on a visit to Somalia. President Guelleh also opened the new Djibouti embassy in Mogadishu. (See article)
The Finance Ministry said this week that the government collected a total of 293.3 million dollars in revenue in 2018, compared to 248 million dollars in 2017, an increase of 18.5%.
South Sudan 
President Salva Kiir discussed the implementation process of the revitalized peace agreement and possible Catholic Church contributions to achieving reconciliation in South Sudan with Pope Francis in Rome on Saturday (March 17). The President extended an official invitation for Pope Francis to visit and hold peace prayers in South Sudan. The Pope was due to visit South Sudan in October 2017 but security conditions made it impossible. 
The UN Security Council, adopting Resolution 2459 (2019) by 14 votes to none with one abstention on Thursday last week (March 14), renewed the mandate of the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) for another year. This followed a briefing from David Shearer, the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative and Head of UNMISS on Friday (March 8). (See article)

The Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission on Monday (March 18) called on the members of the Independent Boundaries Commission, holding their first meeting in Juba, to conclude their works within two months. The IBC is to consider the number of States in South Sudan, their boundaries, the composition and restructuring of the Council of States and to make recommendations. The JMEC Chief of Staff Ambassador Berhanu Kebede said the work of the Commission was critical to the work and functioning of the Revitalized Transitional Government on National Unity. The IBC is made up of fifteen members, five from the present government, two from SPLM/A-IO, one from South Sudan Opposition Alliance, one from Former Detainees and one from Other Political Parties as well as five members, nominated by the AU’s High-Level Ad Hoc Committee on South Sudan from South Africa, Nigeria, Rwanda, Algeria and Chad.
Sudan 
Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister, Mikhail Bogdanov, visiting Khartoum at the weekend said his country would stand by President Omer al-Bashir to overcome the current crisis. Mr. Bogdanov, who met with Sudan’s First Vice-president and Defence Minister Awad Ibn Ouf on Sunday, expressed confidence that Sudan’s leadership was capable of overcoming the economic hardships. He said Russia would work to enhance Sudan’s defence capabilities and provide training for its military cadres.
Sudan and South Sudan, at a meeting of their Joint Political and Security Committee in Khartoum on Monday (March 18) agreed to open the designated border crossing points within a month and activate the Safe Demilitarized Border Zone. Sudan Chief of General Staff said they had also agreed to form joint teams under the auspices of UNISFA to ensure neither side had any military forces in the SBDZ. South Sudan’s Defence Minister said the opening of the crossing points would enhance relations and promotes security and stability. 
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The Prime Minister on official visits to Qatar and the UAE

Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed arrived in Doha on Tuesday morning at the head of a delegation that included State Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mrs. Hirut Zemene.  He was received by Jassim bin Saif Al Sulaiti, Qatar’s Minister of Communications before holding talks with Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani. The two leaders discussed bilateral relations and ways of enhancing and developing the ties in the fields of economy, investment, tourism and infrastructure. They also exchanged views on regional and international developments. The Prime Minister also met Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani, Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior of Qatar. After their talks, Sheikh Abdullah said in a tweet: “We discussed the strengthening of our relations and views on many issues.” Prime Minister Abiy also visited the Qatar Museum which holds collections of masterpieces of Islamic art, including metal and wood crafts, ceramics, jewelry, textiles, coins, and glass. It was his first visit to Qatar since he took office; Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani visited Ethiopia in April 2017.
Both sides have indicated their strong desire to develop and expand relations in all areas of mutual interest. Ethiopia is keen to encourage and attract Qatari investments and open the way for businessmen from different sectors to promote joint projects that can promote and stimulate the Ethiopian economy. This would also create positive opportunities for Qatari investors to activate foreign projects with good economic and social returns. An Ethiopian Investment Forum, organized by the Ethiopian Embassy in Doha, was held in January this year to review investment opportunities in Ethiopia and discuss economic and trade cooperation between the private sectors of both countries. Ethiopia presented investment opportunities to Qatari businessmen in agriculture, manufacturing, services, medicines, building materials and other areas at the Forum 
Following his visit to Qatar, Prime Minister Dr. Abiy made an official visit to the United Arab Emirates, arriving in Abu Dhabi to meet with Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces on Wednesday. The two leaders reviewed their friendly relations and opportunities to enhance cooperation between their two countries, especially in development, economy, and investment. They exchanged views on recent regional and international events as well as on a number of issues of common concern. Prime Minister Dr. Abiy praised UAE’s efforts and its international humanitarian initiatives in promoting the values of tolerance, co-existence, and cooperation among different people and cultures. He stressed Ethiopia’s interest in strengthening and diversifying relations with the UAE, an investment, economic, trade and tourism hub, to support the aspirations of both countries to achieve development and prosperity for their peoples.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan pointed out the importance of enhancing the level of cooperation between the UAE and Ethiopia to meet the aspirations of their peoples. The Ethiopian Prime Minister and the Crown Prince also visited the Special Olympic World Games being held at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre. Dr. Abiy previously visited the UAE in July 2018, when he and Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki were honored with the UAE’s highest civil honor, the Order of Zayed.
Meanwhile, a 75-member commercial delegation from the UAE, led by Abdullah bin Ahmed Al Saleh, UAE’s Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Economy for Foreign Trade Affairs, visited Ethiopia this week. They met with ministers and officials, and attended the second Ethiopian-UAE Business Forum, and the inauguration of the UAE pavilion at the International Trade Exhibition taking place this week in Addis Ababa (March 21-2). Mr. Al Saleh said that the visit aimed to develop the economic, commercial and investment cooperation between Ethiopia and the UAE. He said bilateral economic ties were strong and had witnessed considerable growth. The UAE, he said, prioritized its overall commercial and investment cooperation with Ethiopia, and the visit should create new opportunities for the UAE’s private sector to cooperate with the private sector in Ethiopia, explore new commercial opportunities, present the UAE’s business environment, and facilitate the work of businessmen. The trade volume amounted to over 618 million US dollars in 2917 and has increased significantly since then.
The Ethiopian-UAE Business Forum was held this week on Wednesday (March 20), Opening the Forum, State Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Aklilu Hailemichael noted the two countries’ long-standing and historical diplomatic relations, which he said, served as bedrock to build effective trade and business links between the UAE and Ethiopia. He said he was pleased to observe UAE-Ethiopia business representatives today taking this opportunity to exchange ideas, and steps to translate the excellent relations between the two countries into viable economic cooperation. “Ethiopia, with its lucrative environment for investment, is opening its door for sustainable economic cooperation,” added Dr. Aklilu. The UAE’s Abdullah Al Saleh, commended the sound economic policy and conducive investment climate in Ethiopia, saying, “This UAE- Ethiopia Business forum presents us with invaluable platforms to explore investment opportunities in Ethiopia”, adding, this business forum offers UAE companies best knowledge and insights to enhance trade, business and investment ties between Ethiopia, UAE business communities. 
Ethiopia’s State Minister of Trade and Industry and former Ambassador to the Emirates, Ambassador Misganu Arega, noted: “this joint business forum is instrumental to strengthen the all-rounded bilateral ties between UAE and Ethiopia.” He emphasized that Ethiopia with its strategic geographical location was a gateway to regional markets, which offered a huge trade and investment potential for prospective UAE companies to establish new and sustainable business partnerships in the region.
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President Guelleh in Somalia: inaugurates new embassy 

President Ismail Omar Guelleh of Djibouti made a two-day state visit to Somalia last weekend (March 16-17). President Guelleh, who was accompanied to Somalia by a high-level delegation, later held talks with President Mohamed Abdullahi on bilateral relations, and discussed topics of common interest including the strategic changes necessary for security cooperation after the withdrawal of AMISOM, economic partnership, and the latest developments in the region. President Guelleh also met with Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khayre.
Welcoming President Guelleh, President Abdullahi said: “It is an honour to welcome President Ismail Guelleh on his official state visit to Somalia this morning. Djibouti is a true friend, ally and brother. We have deep roots, historical ties and a shared future of common progress and prosperity.” He later hosted a dinner at Villa Somalia in honour of President Guelleh and his delegation.
On Sunday, President Guelleh inaugurated the newly-built Djibouti embassy in Mogadishu’s Abdiaziz district. Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi, Federal Government ministers and Members of Parliament attended the colourful ceremony. Villa Somalia said the official opening of the embassy, in the presence of President Guelleh, reflected on the level of distinguished “brotherly and cordial ties” between the two countries. In his speech, the President Guelleh reaffirmed his country’s commitment towards strengthening diplomatic relations with Somalia and contributing to the international and regional combined efforts to stabilize Somalia. Speaking on the same occasion, President Abdullahi expressed his gratitude to the Djiboutian President for his "courageous" visit to Somalia and Djibouti’s role in AMISOM in fighting the Al-Shabaab extremist group. 
During his visit, President Guelleh also visited Beled Weyne town in Hiiraan, 335km north of Mogadishu, to meet Djibouti’s troops operating in AMISOM. The 2,000 Djibouti troops in AMISOM are in charge of Sector 4 which covers the regions of Hiiraan and Galgadud.
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Implementation of South Sudan’s Peace Agreement Progressing - ‘Slowly but Surely’

The UN Security Council, adopting Resolution 2459 (2019) by 14 votes to none with one abstention on Thursday last week (March 14), renewed the mandate of the UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) for another year. The resolution reinforced the core mission of UNMISS: to protect civilians, support delivery of humanitarian assistance, monitor and investigate human rights, and support the peace process. It also called for UNMISS to strengthen its sexual and gender-based violence prevention activities and to facilitate efforts by internally displaced persons to return home from the UN protection of civilian sites. It underlined the importance of the Revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in South Sudan (R-ARCSS) and stressed power-sharing and security arrangements and the safe return of all South Sudanese parties to Juba were essential to advance the peace process. It called upon the parties “to ensure full and meaningful participation of women in the peace process and fulfill the commitments set out on inclusivity, including in respect of national diversity, gender, youth and regional representation”. 
Maintaining UNMISS force levels at 17,000 troops and 2,101 police, it underlined the key role of neighboring states, as well as regional and sub-regional organizations, could play in encouraging efforts to further enhance cooperation. 
With regard to the Regional Protection Force (RPF), authorized in August 2016, the Council, agreed to make the necessary adjustments to UNMISS to match security conditions on the ground. The ceiling for the force to be set by the Secretary-General, and should not exceed 4,000 troops.  Noting a request from the African Union Peace and Security Council, the Council expressed its willingness to consider a review of the UNMISS mandate and the composition of the Regional Protection Force, after the parties negotiate permanent security arrangements and form the Revitalized Transitional Government of National Unity.
The renewal of UNMISS’ mandate follows a briefing to the Security Council by David Shearer, the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative and Head of UNMISS on Friday (March 8). Mr. Shearer, underlining the “considerable” progress achieved since the signing of the Revitalized Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in South Sudan in September 2018, detailed the Secretary-General’s 90-day report covering 1 December 2018 to 26 February. He commended the efforts of regional partners in brokering the Agreement, and cited four positive changes that were taking place: opposition politicians from various parties were moving freely around the capital, Juba, without hindrance and participating in meetings on the peace process; more than 70 meetings and rapprochements had been held across the country; overall levels of political violence had diminished significantly; and people were expressing a willingness to return home, with an estimated 135,000 refugees, out of some 2.3 million, having returned. 
There were still challenges, and the timetable set out in the 12 September 2018 Agreement was well behind where it should be, with some outstanding issues still needing to be resolved, including the resolution of boundary and state issues, the formation of a unified armed force and the constitution-making process. Mr. Shearer stressed that the current “pre-transitional Government” phase of the peace process would end on 12 May, when the revitalized transitional Government is scheduled to take over and the Vice-Presidents take up their roles.  He warned: “A peace that falters will generate frustration, anger and a possible return to violence…We cannot allow that to happen.”  He emphasized that the next three months would be critical for humanitarian assistance as after that the rainy season would make land transport impossible and close the window for planting crops.  
South Sudan’s delegate said that the security, peace and economic situation had “improved noticeably” since the signing of the Revitalized Agreement; and implementation was progressing “slowly but surely.”  He noted that the National Dialogue Regional Conferences had started; one in Wau had concluded; the next to be held would be in Greater Upper Nile; and a final conference would be held in the Greater Equatoria region before the end of May. He emphasized that refugees were returning voluntarily in large numbers and the economy was beginning to recover. He drew attention to the problem posed by inadequate funding, and urged the Council, IGAD and the AU to work to convince outstanding opposition groups to join the peace process.
A day earlier, (March 7) at a meeting of the Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission in Juba, interim chairman, General Augostino Njoroge, also noted significant progress. He said the National Constitutional Amendment Committee had concluded its review and amendments of the relevant security-related legislation; the Technical Boundary Committee had made significant progress and was expected to conclude its work shortly. While he said the Joint Defense Board had reached agreement on cantonment sites for all opposition forces and had designated barracks for government forces, he also pointed out the lack of international financial support for the peace agreement. He emphasized that the peace partners showed a high sense of responsibility and a number of confidence-building measures had been taken to create a suitable atmosphere for enforcement. The signatories had also been touring the country to disseminate the peace agreement and encouraged IDPs to return home.
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The 6th Ethiopian-Tunisian Joint Ministerial Commission meeting in Tunis
The 6th Ethiopian-Tunisian Joint Ministerial Commission meeting was held on Thursday last week (March 14) in Tunis. The meeting was co-chaired by Mrs. Hirut Zemene, Sate Minister of the Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia and Hatem Ferjani, Secretary of State of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Charge of Economic Diplomacy of Tunisia. The Joint Ministerial Commission meeting which was preceded by experts’ discussions the previous day, offered the opportunity to discuss ways of strengthening bilateral cooperation, in a number of different areas. 
In her opening remarks, State Minister Mrs Hirut emphasized that Ethiopia truly valued the time-tested and strong diplomatic ties existing between the two countries for close to half a century. This was underlined by the recognition of Emperor Haile-Selassie I and President Habib Bourguiba’s vital roles in the creation of the OAU. Mrs. Hirut also explained the comprehensive reforms underway in Ethiopia, noting the current positive contributions to the Horn of Africa. 
Mr. Hatem Ferjani commended Ethiopia’s efforts for the maintenance of regional peace and security. Appreciating the strong political and diplomatic ties between the two countries, he also underlined the importance of strengthening the bilateral relationship in economic and social areas. Mr. Ferjani, who expressed his profound condolences over the tragic accident of flight ET-302, also extended congratulations to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Workneh Gebeyehu, on his appointment as Head of the United Nations Office in Nairobi.
The two sides discussed trade and investment exchanges between the two countries. They expressed their determination to increase these as well as establish favorable conditions for meetings and direct contacts between the businessmen of the two countries. In this context, they welcomed the Tunisia-Ethiopia Business Forum held in Addis Ababa in October last year and the Business to Government Session held in Tunis on the side-lines of the Joint Commission meeting. They agreed to encourage such events. They also signed a number of cooperation agreements on a range of areas including tourism, culture, technology and industrial development, vocational training and employment, women’s affairs and the family. They agreed to pursue further discussions regarding the conclusion of agreements in higher education and scientific research, aviation, water production and distribution, agriculture, sports, information and communication technology. 
The Joint Ministerial Commission also provided an important venue to underline the need to work closely to navigate the future of bilateral cooperation and pave the way for the realization of the Africa 2063 Agenda. The meeting stressed the creation of the Continental Free Trade Area, brokered by the African Union and signed onto by 44 of the AU member states in Kigali last year, as one of the important milestones for progress towards Africa 2063.
During her visit, State Minister Mrs. Hirut met Mr. Khemaies Jhinaoui, Tunisia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs. Their talks covered issues of common interest, sharing ideas on ways of consolidating the relationship in a spirit of mutual benefit, and focusing on the need to establish follow-up mechanisms for the implementation of existing bilateral agreements and expand cooperation in the areas of socio-economic sectors. On the side-lines of the Joint Ministerial Commission meeting, investment and tourism promotions were organized to demonstrate potential areas of engagement to Tunisian business people and industry associations. 
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The Diplomatic Community briefed on the tragic accident of Flight ET-302 

Minister of Transport Ms. Dagmawit Moges ; State Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Markos Tekle; and the Vice President of Internal Audit and Compliance at Ethiopian Airlines, Kassim Geresu briefed the diplomatic community at the weekend on the various activities being carried out by the Government in response to the tragic plane crash on March 10.
Ms. Dagmawit said the Government of Ethiopia had made sure to provide all information possible as timely as possible, as well as giving all necessary support to governments and their respective diplomatic missions to enable them to obtain whatever details were available. She stressed that all the activities undertaken in collaboration with stakeholders were being done on the basis of international standards and norms. All activities were closely monitored and analyzed with great care and seriousness.  The Minister said that six sub-committees had been established to follow-up various actions and developments. These were being jointly overseen by the Ministry of Transport and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
State Minister Dr. Markos Tekle said information was being given to the respective countries who had lost citizens in the crash regularly, consistently and in organized fashion. He advised diplomatic missions, their respective ministries and other involved parties to rely on official government sources. Vice President of Internal Audit and Compliance at Ethiopian Airlines, Kassim Geresu said that efforts were well underway with regard to providing accurate and timely information as well as support to individuals and to the families of victims. 
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Ethiopia takes part in Pu’er City’s 2nd China International Specialty Coffee Expo
A delegation from the Ethiopian Embassy in Beijing participated in the 2nd China International Specialty Coffee Expo which took place last week from Tuesday to Sunday (March 12-17) in Pu’er City, considered the “Coffee Capital” of China. The Expo was co-hosted by the Industry Promotion Center of the Ministry of Commerce and Yunnan Province International Coffee Exchange (YICE). The aim was to foster commercial partnerships among stakeholders of the global coffee industry and the Expo brought together more than 1000 participants from different corners of the world, including coffee industry experts, producers, roasters, café owners, baristas, importers, exporters, industry associations, and government officials. 
Ethiopia’s participation offered the Chinese coffee community the opportunity to explore its coffee exports and its value-adding processing. The delegation from the embassy shared the experience of Ethiopia’s organic, high quality varieties of coffee. Ethiopia, as the ancestral home of the highly desirable Arabica varieties of coffee, is well-positioned to penetrate the specialty coffee market in China. The Expo focused on the rapidly growing coffee market in China where there has been a recent tectonic shift towards a more upscale coffee drinking culture. China is rapidly becoming a member of the league of the largest coffee-consuming countries.
China presented a new Trade Facilitation Initiative under the Forum on China Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) last year. This is intended to expand the spectrum of imports from Africa, and among Ethiopia’s value-added and specialty coffee offers promising potential for export growth. In its presentation at the Expo, the Embassy delegation underlined the long-term efforts of the Government of Ethiopia to improve traceability of coffee beans and transparency for the return to coffee growers. These offer a meaningful contribution for the transformation of the global specialty coffee market.
On the side-lines of the Expo, the Embassy delegation also met with the municipal leadership of the People’s Government of Pu’re City and officials of the Yunnan International Coffee Exchange. They held useful discussions on ways to cooperate further in developing the specialty coffee market and Ethiopia’s coffee exports.  







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