Economy in Ethiopia

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Economy—overview: Ethiopia remains one of the poorest and least developed countries in the world. Its economy is based on agriculture which accounts for more than half of GDP 90% of exports and 80% of total employment; coffee generates 60% of export earnings. The agricultural sector suffers from frequent periods of drought poor cultivation practices and deterioration of internal security conditions. The manufacturing sector is heavily dependent on inputs from the agricultural sector. Over 90% of large-scale industry but less than 10% of agriculture is state-run. The government is considering selling off a portion of state-owned plants and is implementing reform measures that are gradually liberalizing the economy. A major medium-term problem is the improvement of roads water supply and other parts of an infrastructure badly neglected during years of civil strife.

GDP: purchasing power parity—$29 billion (1997 est.)

GDP—real growth rate: 5% (1997 est.)

GDP—per capita: purchasing power parity—$530 (1997 est.)

GDP—composition by sector:

agriculture: 55%

industry: 12%

services: 33% (1995 est.)

Inflation rate—consumer price index: 0% (1996 est.)

Labor force:

total: NA

by occupation: agriculture and animal husbandry 80% government and services 12% industry and construction 8% (1985)

Unemployment rate: NA%


revenues: $1 billion

expenditures: $1.48 billion including capital expenditures of $415 million (FY96/97)

Industries: food processing beverages textiles chemicals metals processing cement

Industrial production growth rate: NA%

Electricity—capacity: 464 000 kW (1995)

Electricity—production: 1.143 billion kWh (1995)

Electricity—consumption per capita: 20 kWh (1995)

Agriculture—products: cereals pulses coffee oilseed sugarcane potatoes other vegetables; hides cattle sheep goats


total value: $418 million (f.o.b. 1996)

commodities: coffee leather products gold (1995)

partners: Germany 32% Japan 14% Djibouti 7% Saudi Arabia 8% Italy 8% (1994)


total value: $1.23 billion (f.o.b. 1996 est.)

commodities: food and live animals petroleum and petroleum products chemicals machinery motor vehicles and aircraft (1994)

partners: Saudi Arabia 15% Italy 11% US 12.3% Germany 8% (1994)

Debt—external: $5.2 billion (1995)

Economic aid:

recipient: ODA $367 million (FY95/96)

Currency: 1 birr (Br) = 100 cents

Exchange rates: birr (Br) per US$1 (end of period)—6.9530 (February 1998) 6.8080 (September 1997) 6.4260 (1996) 6.3200 (1995) 5.9500 (1994) 5.0000 (fixed rate 1992-93)

note: since May 1993 the birr market rate has been determined in an interbank market supported by weekly wholesale auction; prior to that date the official rate was pegged to US$1 = 5.000 birr

Fiscal year: 8 July—7 July

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