Overview

  • Ethiopia’s location gives it strategic dominance as a jumping off point in the Horn of Africa, close to the Middle East and its markets. Bordering Eritrea, Somalia, Kenya, South Sudan, and Sudan, Ethiopia is landlocked, and has been using neighboring Djibouti's main port for the last two decades. However, with the recent peace with Eritrea, Ethiopia is set to resume accessing the Eritrean ports of Assab and Massawa for its international trade.

    With about 102 million people (2016), Ethiopia is the second most populous nation in Africa after Nigeria, and the fastest growing economy in the region. However, it is also one of the poorest, with a per capita income of $783. Ethiopia aims to reach lower-middle-income status by 2025.

    Ethiopia’s economy experienced strong, broad-based growth averaging 10.3% a year from 2006/07 to 2016/17, compared to a regional average of 5.4%. Ethiopia’s gross domestic product (GDP) is estimated to have rebounded to 10.9% in FY2017. Agriculture, construction and services accounted for most of the growth, with modest contribution from the manufacturing sector. Private consumption and public investment explain demand-side growth, the latter assuming an increasingly important role.

    Higher economic growth brought with it positive trends in poverty reduction in both urban and rural areas. The share of the population living below the national poverty line decreased from 30% in 2011 to 24% in 2016. The government is implementing the second phase of its Growth and Transformation Plan (GTP II) which will run to 2019/20. GTP II aims to continue expanding physical infrastructure through public investments and to transform the country into a manufacturing hub. GTP II targets an average of 11% GDP growth annually, and in line with the manufacturing strategy, the industrial sector is set to expand by 20% on average, creating more jobs.

    Development Challenges

    Ethiopia’s main challenges are sustaining its positive economic growth and accelerating poverty reduction, which both require significant progress in job creation as well as improved governance. The government is devoting a high share of its budget to pro-poor programs and investments. Large scale donor support will continue to provide a vital contribution in the near-term to finance the cost of pro-poor programs.

    Key challenges are related to:

    • Limited competitiveness, which constrains the development of manufacturing, the creation of jobs and the increase of exports.
    • An underdeveloped private sector, which would limit the country’s trade competitiveness and resilience to shocks. The government aims to expand the role of the private sector through foreign investment and industrial parks to make Ethiopia’s growth momentum more sustainable.
    • Political disruption, associated with social unrest, could negatively impact growth through lower FDI, tourism and exports.

     

    Last Updated: Oct 31, 2018

  • World Bank Group (WBG) Assistance to Ethiopia

    The Country Partnership Framework (CPF) FY18-FY22 builds on the progress achieved by Ethiopia during the past five years. The CPF was developed after intensive consultations with a wide range of stakeholders to gain a broad-based perspective on the WBG’s performance and development priorities. The CPF is a result-based strategy, firmly anchored in the government’s Second Growth and Transformation Plan (GTPII).

    The CPF is designed to assist Ethiopia in forging a more inclusive and sustainable growth path. Particularly, it supports a more spatially inclusive approach to development, one that leverages national programs to provide quality services to all areas. The CPF is helping to promote structural and economic transformation through increased productivity in rural and urban areas by focusing on basic education, access to markets, and job opportunities for youth. It is also helping to build resilience and inclusiveness (including gender equality) by improving safety nets, investing in productive landscapes, and focusing on the Early Years agenda.

    The CPF also supports institutional accountability and assists in combating corruption by focusing on improving governance and promoting social accountability. The private sector is expected to be a key contributor to Ethiopia’s future development, and the CPF envisages prominent roles for the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), the WBG institutions that focus exclusively on it.

    Last Updated: Oct 31, 2018

  • The International Development Association (IDA) is Ethiopia’s largest provider of official development assistance. IDA has committed over $20 billion to more than 80 projects in Ethiopia since 1991, most notably for the Enhancing Shared Prosperity through Equitable Services program, productive safety nets, and roads.

    Education

    IDA’s support for the education sector—including through the General Education Quality Improvement Program and the Enhancing Shared Prosperity through Equitable Services program—has helped Ethiopia expand access to quality primary education over the last nine years. Primary net enrollment rate increased from 79.1% in 2006 to 99.3% 2016. There has also been a considerable reduction of the gender gap for schooling. The ratio of girls to boys for grades 1–8 increased from 0.84 in 2006 to 0.92 in 2016. The gross enrollment rate for secondary school (grades 9–10) increased from 37.1% in 2007 to 44.8% in 2016. Through the Country Partnership Framework, the Bank is working to improve the quality of and equitable access to education to address issues including high dropout rates and low learning outcomes, especially for girls.

    Water and Sanitation

    A number of operations have supported access to safe water sources and sanitation services, and the better management of water resources, including giving 4.2 million rural people an improved water supply (from 2013). A $250 million urban water supply and sanitation project is to increase the sustainable water supply and sanitation services in Addis Ababa and selected cities, providing one million people in urban areas with improved water sources, 2.7 million with improved water supply services, and 200,000 with sanitation services. A follow-on $445 million IDA credit was approved in March 2017.  Under its CPF, the Bank continues to support the government’s  goal of providing 100% national potable water supply coverage by 2020.

    Roads

    IDA has invested more than $2 billion since 1991 to address the country’s infrastructure gap, partly through the Road Sector Development Program (RSDP). IDA helped build capacity and establish a dedicated road fund for financing maintenance. Working in partnership with other donors, including the European Commission, Germany, Japan, Nordic countries and the United Kingdom, IDA helped increase both the size and quality of Ethiopia’s road network from under 20,000 km in 1991 to over 100,000 km in 2015. Under the CPF, the World Bank continues supporting improvements in transport infrastructure and road connectivity to reduce travel times and improve connectivity between markets and secondary cities.

    Last Updated: Oct 31, 2018

  • Several donors are active in Ethiopia, with external aid of $3.7 billion in 2015. Both the government and the majority of international partners are keen to deepen the harmonization process in the spirit of the Paris Declaration (2005) and Accra Agenda for Action (2008). Ethiopia is a pilot country for the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development Assistance Committee harmonization agenda, and for the European Union’s initiative on donor division of labor. Partners are currently considering how to build on this progress in light of the Accra Agenda.

    The WBG, with the United Nations Development Programme and one bilateral donor, is one of the rotating co-chairs of the Development Assistance Group (DAG), the main forum for donor coordination in Ethiopia. Through DAG there are efforts to make progress on the implementation of commitments in the Paris and Accra Declarations, including joint economic and sector work (much of the WBG’s major analytical work has already been prepared with its partners) and joint missions. Much of the collective effort is focused on furthering harmonization through major multi-donor programs and policy areas of importance.

    The WBG has taken the lead in developing a set of multi-donor programs to reduce transaction costs, aligning support with the country’s decentralized model, and enhancing the predictability of aid. These instruments allow for large-scale leveraging of International Development Association (IDA) support. Such approaches are used in the Enhancing Shared Prosperity through Equitable Services, the Productive Safety Nets Program 4; the Water Supply, Sanitation, and Hygiene Universal Access Program, the Sustainable Land Management Project II, and the Agricultural Growth Program II.

    The launch of the Expressway Development Support Project (EDSP) marked a historic moment in the WBG’s partnership with Ethiopia, as it is the first project co-financed with China EXIM Bank and South Korea EXIM Bank. The project brings together traditional and non-traditional development partners to work on a single project, with standardized design, safeguards, and joint-supervision.

     

    Last Updated: Oct 31, 2018

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LENDING

Ethiopia: Commitments by Fiscal Year (in millions of dollars)*

*Amounts include IBRD and IDA commitments

MULTIMEDIA

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Additional Resources

Country Office Contacts

Main Office Contact
Africa Avenue (Bole Road)
Addis Ababa
Ethiopia
+(251) 115176000
For media requests and general inquiries
Gelila Woodeneh
Sr. Communications Officer
+(251) 115176000
gwoodeneh@worldbank.org
For project-related issues and complaints
ethiopiaalert@worldbank.org