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Ethiopia keeps 10.8% GDP growth forecast for 2008

May 15, 2008

Finance Minister Sufian Ahmed also told Parliament that the Horn of African nation had signed loan and grant agreements worth $912 million so far this year.

“Performance in the agricultural and services sector indicates that Ethiopia will register a 10.8 percent economic growth for the fifth consecutive year in 2008,” he said.

However, the price of food grains had soared in the last two years and annual inflation stood at 19 percent in March, up from 18 percent in February, Sufian added.

He cited high international fuel prices and costly machinery and construction equipment imports for being behind the rising inflation.

Earlier in the year Ethiopia scrapped taxes on flour and grains to help cushion the effects of inflation.

Sufian added the government had distributed over 18,000 tonnes of grain to consumers and imported cooking oil and wheat flour to be sold at subsidised prices.

Exports have grown on average by 25 percent in the agricultural-dependent economy over the last four years, he said.

The country expects $1.8 billion export earnings in 2008, boosted by bigger volumes of coffee, flowers and pulses, according to the Ministry of Trade and Industry.

Despite its healthy economic figures, nation of 81 million people is still one of the world’s poorest, ranking 170 out of 177 on the UN Human Development Index.

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4 comments on “Ethiopia keeps 10.8% GDP growth forecast for 2008

  1. I think this is absolute nonsense. A quintal of Teff now costs ETB800. Even if you are willing to buy for that amount of money, you must be lucky to get the grain available for sale. I have also heard that currently a quintal of Maize or Bokolo costs 600 Birr. So government official should stop kidding and start to seriously think about the dangerous trend of inflation rate in Addis Ababa city.

  2. There must be unexplained problem in the Agricultural sector. In my opinion, one possible factor for the shortage of agricultural product especially grain such as Teff is that farmers go to main cities areas such as Addis Ababa to work in the construction sectors abandoning their farmland.

    The government’s focus on dollar generating products such as flower, chat (Kat) etc. can be considered as another factor.

  3. Statistics can be massaged. Here it seems to me that the growth is massaged by the authorities. Otherwise, how can we talk about growth while the majority of the people have no food to eat.

  4. It is great that our economy is growing at such rate despite the number of people dying of hunger is increasing everywhere in Ethiopia. Both growth levels in the economy and the death of citizens are simple statistics in Ethiopia. We are fade up of political statistics. Enjoy your statistics with your foreign friends.

    God bless Ethiopia!

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