Ethiopia May 11 2015

von Redakteur

Two groups of Ethiopian migrants who were kidnapped by militants in Libya have arrived in Addis Ababa this week. Up to 300 hundred Ethiopians are willing and eager to come back home after the ISIS terror group killed more than 30 Ethiopian and Eritrean immigrants in Libya last month. An estimated 3000 immigrants from Eritrea, Ethiopia, Somalia and other east African countries are reported under control of militants in Libya. The militant groups including ISIL work with illegal people traffickers to kidnap the helpless migrants. The Ethiopians were rescued by the Egyptian forces with the help of the Libyans. Egypt has been conducting military operations in the ISIS stronghold inside Libya where 21 Egyptians Christian were beheaded by ISIL in late January (Tigrai Online, May 8).

A group of Ethiopians who had been kidnapped in Libya arrived at Cairo airport on Thursday after Egyptian army forces rescued them, state media quoted Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi as saying. But one Ethiopian in the group, and a Libyan source, appeared to cast doubt on that version of events, saying the men had only been held up by Libyan immigration (Reuters, May 7).

The Ministry of Agriculture (MoA) has completed the construction of two of the four artificial insemination laboratories, which have been planned for four regions of the country, at a cost of 33.2m Br. The other two will be completed by the end of the current fiscal year. The four laboratories are being constructed in Mekele, Tigray Region; Bahir Dar, Amhara Region; Hawassa, Southern Nations Nationalities and Peoples Region, and Nekemte, Oromia region. While the two in Mekele and Bahir Dar have been completed, the other two, in Nekemte and Hawassa, are 90% and 75% complete, respectively, according to Gebregziabher Gebreyohannes, state minister for Livestock Development Clusterat the Ministry of Agriculture. The procurement of equipment for the four laboratories is being done by the Public Procurement and Property Disposal Services (PPPDS) at a cost of 27.3m Br. The equipment includes artificial organs and liquid nitrogen that can conserve the semen at -196º C. Up until now, the country has been relying on a single 35 year-old National Artificial Insemination Centre (NAIC) that has a capacity of supplying one million doses of semen to the whole country."The distribution of the semen so far was to areas found within a 100 km radius of Addis Abeba, where the laboratory is located. The new ones will help distribute the semen to different places in their respective areas," said Gebregziabher (Addis Fortune, May 4).

The United Kingdom government has expressed delight at its expanding joint investment with Ethiopia, following the inauguration of a new ‘food factory’ in the town of Bishoftu, which lies south-east of Addis Ababa. ‘Ahadukes Food Products’ factory is a joint investment between UK-based Vasari Investments Group and Ahadu PLC; and envisages growing the initial US$36m investment into a US$120m project within a few years. The UK envoy Greg Dorey explained that the Ahadukes project goes very much with the grain of the government of Ethiopia’s desire to add value to agricultural production through the establishment of new processing methods and establishments. The project, he adds, will contribute to import substitution and meeting export targets as well as creating large numbers of jobs and transferring technology (WIC, May 7).

The Ethiopian Airlines has announced the launch of its first direct flight between its hub in Addis Ababa and Tokyo’s Narita airport, Japan. Ethiopian Airlines plans three regular flights per week on the Addis Ababa-Narita route using 787-8 Dreamliner aircraft. Operated in an apparatus configured to accommodate 24 passengers in business class and 246 in economy class, the flights depart three times a week at 22:15 from Addis Ababa to arrive the next day at 13:15 to Hong Kong, and land in Narita at 19:30. The return flights leave Tokyo at 20:45 to arrive at 23:55 in Hong Kong and arrive in Addis Ababa the next day at 6:00. These flights are operated by codeshare with All Nippon Airways. The launch of the Ethiopia-Japan route was decided by the governments of the two countries in Dec. 2013  (WIC, May 6).

 Metekel Gold Mine, a third mine site MIDROC Ethiopia Technology Group possesses, is confirmed to be viable through a feasibility study and it will be developed with an investment of 4.2bln birr. The gold mine located in Benishangul Gumuz Regional State has the capacity to produce 2,300 kg of gold per year. According to Dr. Arega Yirdaw, CEO of MIDROC Ethiopia, the mine will have a life span of 15 years and during that time it is expected to bring in 27bln birr revenue from sales of the precious metal. “We will start excavation in 2018, this kind of large processing plant will take at least three years to go functional because, among other things, it is located in a remote area,” said Arega. The project has already hooked the interest of foreign financers but the mining company is yet to utilize that interest. „Maybe we will do it on our own when we reach that point, or maybe, we will look for partners,” Arega told Capital. The gold mine plant that will have a complete laboratory, earth moving machineries and equipments is expected to be erected within three years. The Metekel Gold Mine will be creating employment opportunities for 650 people and will be bringing in 420m birr for the government through tax, among other things (Capital Ethiopia, May 11).