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  • 'My dream is to become an Aerospace Engineer at NASA. And I will be,'

    'To fly an aircraft is not a bi'My dream is to become an Aerospace Engineer at NASA. And I will be,'  g deal,' he explains. 'The greatest danger will be in landing' said Ethiopian man who was told he was too short to be a pilot uses YouTube to build his own plane which he wants to fly to his wedding. Asmelash Zeferu was 1cm too short to train to be a pilot.

    It sounds like a tall order but Asmelash Zeferu did not want to let being too short stop him from flying a plane. This weekend, the intrepid 35-year-old, plans to take his handcrafted K-570 light aeroplane to the air near the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa and marry his fiancé Seble Bekele when he lands. Remarkably, he has never flown before and he hopes the attempt will be more successful than five months ago when a broken propeller thwarted his dream. Homemade: Asmelash Zeferu, 35, next to the plane he has built by hand. He was rejected from aviation school because he was too short but he does not want to let that stop him from his dream of flying

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    Image: Homemade: Asmelash Zeferu, 35, next to the plane he has built by hand. He was rejected from aviation school because he was too short but he does not want to let that stop him from his dream of flying.

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  • Ethiopia to Legislate the New Oversea Employment Proclamation

    The House of People’s Representatives (HPR) is set to approve the draft proclamation on overseas employment within the next two weeks FBC reported. Social Affairs Standing Committee of the HPR yesterday organized discussion forum on the draft proclamation. Stakeholders and cross section of the society who took part at the forum commented on the issue. They said the newly revised proclamation is vital to solve the challenges and ensure benefits of Ethiopians traveling abroad to look for work.
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    Ethiopia to Legislate the New Oversea Employment Proclamation

    Image: view of the drafted law.

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  • Ethiopia, Sudan approve to launch free trade zone

    By Tesfa-Alem Tekle

    November 24, 2015 (ADDIS ABABA) – The joint technical committee of Ethiopia and Sudan Tuesday has approved an agreement to establish free trade zone between the two countries in a bid to strengthen economic ties.

    The approval is a follow-up to a previous joint technical committee meeting in Khartoum where the two neighbours reach an initial agreement to establish free trade zones based on mutual interest.

    Ethiopia’s Deputy Prime Minister for Finance and Economic Cluster and Minister of Communication and Information Technology, Debretsion Gebremichael, told reporters that a Joint Committee drawn from both countries has been formed to conduct a study on ways of implementing the agreement within the next three months.

    When implemented the free zone will generate investment opportunities and further enhance trade exchange.

    It was disclosed that currencies of the two countries will be used in the free trade zone.The joint commitee, the Ethiopian minister said will also be tasked to undertake a study on ways of filling the gap on the use of currency.

    The two countries have also agreed to open commercial banks on their respective capitals, a matter that the joint t technical body will consider the best ways to implement within the slated period of time.

    Sudanese vice-president Hasabo Mohamed Abdel-Rahman, said the trade zone will further bolster the longstanding historical and economic ties of the two countries and expressed commitment to implement the agreement accordingly.

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  • Egypt to Request Halting the Second Phase of GERD Construction until Further Negotiations are Held

    Egypt renewed its stronEgypt to Request Halting the Second Phase of GERD Construction until Further Negotiations are Held g commitment to completing technical studies of the dam in a timely manner 'before it is too late,' Egyptian Spokesperson for the Renaissance Dam and advisor to the Minister of Water Resources Alaa Yassin said on Tuesday. Egypt highlighted the importance of the overdue technical studies and their political significance amid the "alarming" speed of construction.

    A source from the Egyptian irrigation ministry expects that Egypt will officially request halting the second phase of construction until further negotiations are held concerning the filling of the dam.

    Yassin said in a press statement that consultations between the three countries (Sudan, Ethiopia, and Egypt) are underway in order to determine the timing of two meetings. The first is the six-party meeting, which includes water ministers from the three countries. The second meeting in Khartoum will be the tenth round of the national tripartite committee.
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    Image: Construction progress of GERD on its 3rd year.

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  • WB Report: Ethiopia's Great Economic Run

    ADDIS ABABA, November 23, 2015 –With Continued Rapid Growth, Ethiopia is Poised to Become a Middle Income Country by 2025. According to a new report by World BWB Report: Ethiopia's Great Economic Runank Group, services and agriculture sectors were the main contributors to this accelerated growth, which was driven by substantial public infrastructure investment and supported by a conducive external environment.

    To sustain high growth, the report offers three policy recommendations, including continuing sustainably financed infrastructure investment, supporting the private sector through credit markets, and tapping into the growth potential of modernizing the policy framework.
    Ethiopia has witnessed rapid economic growth, with real gross domestic product (GDP) growth averaging 10.9% between 2004 and 2014, which is lifting the country from being the second poorest in the world in 2000 to becoming a middle income country by 2025, if it continues its current growth trajectory.

    Fueled by substantial public infrastructure investment and a conducive external environment, the country’s growth has been stable, rapid and it has managed to decrease poverty substantially from 44%  in 2000 to 30% in 2011, according to the national poverty line, according to a new World Bank report, Ethiopia’s Great Run: The Growth Acceleration and How to Pace It. The report, launched today, traces the reasons behind the impressive growth and also puts forth policy suggestions on sustaining it.

    “Ethiopia began to see accelerated economic progress in 1992 and it shifted to an even higher gear in 2004, pulling millions of people out of poverty and leading to improvements in other areas like improved life expectancy and reduced child and infant mortality,” said Lars Christian Moller, the World Bank Group’s lead economist for Ethiopia and the lead author of the report. “To continue the impressive run, Ethiopia needs to continue its reforms efforts to further strengthen its growth foundations.”

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    Image: World Bank's new economic report on Ethiopia.

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  • Health Extension Workers Forgotten in Ethiopia

    Health extension workers have been vital in Ethiopia’s rural communities. They have introduced new mothers to the importance of child immunisation, taught houHealth Extension Workers Forgotten in Ethiopiaseholds about sanitation and, with the recent introduction of ambulances, they refer women to health centres for antenatal care and skilled birth assistance.

    These community health workers are selected from the rural areas they come from. After being trained they return to their communities to provide healthcare services. The programme has been very successful. As a result, international institutions including the World Bank, USAID and the World Health Organisation have commended its programme. And several other African countries have been eagerly following it to see how a community based health programme can be taken to scale.

    Despite this, Ethiopia has placed little focus on the workers who make up this health workforce. Many want to leave their positions because there is little chance for promotion or transfer. Unless Ethiopia provides these health workers with better opportunities for education, training and promotion, it stands to lose many of them.

    Critical shortages in Ethiopia’s health workforce, along with an uneven distribution of staff, a poor skill mix and high attrition of trained health professionals are among the major obstacles in delivering healthcare. A total of 83.6% of the population lives in rural areas, making it one of the least urbanised countries in the world. The country’s economy is heavily dependent on agriculture, which employs over 70% of the country’s workforce.

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    Image: A woman extension worker employed by the Afar Pastoralist Development Association. The women are not allowed to transfer from their rural posts and have to be separated from their families. Kate Holt/Anglican Overseas Aid.

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