Distributed Energy Systems: Best Path for Poverty Reduction


Despite being a continent with abundant energy resources, a great chunk of the African population still lacks access to electricity. This could change by focusing on the use of distributed energy resources, writes Desta Mebratu (Prof.) (desta@africaleapfrog.org), CEO of African Transformative Leapfrogging Advisory Service.


Youth in Agriculture, Key to Developing Economies

The agriculture sector remains a crucial sector for the development of African economies. Governments and multilateral institutions thus should work not only to create an environment for the development of the sector but find ways of making it attractive for the youth, writes Chimimba David Phiri, FAO subregional coordinator for Eastern Africa and FAO representative to the AU and ECA.


The And-and Formula to Growth, Environmental Sustainability

To double the forest industry’s share of gross domestic product and create over half a million jobs, we need to ensure Ethiopia’s forests are maintained, nurtured and restored, write Bethlehem Tilahun Alemu, founder and CEO of SoleRebels footwear, Kitty van der Heijden, director of WRI Africa and WRI Europe, and Sebsebe Demissew (Prof), professor at Addis Abeba University.


Putting Communities at the Heart of the Fight against Desert Locusts

Desert Locusts have been costly to combat, because efforts are made after plagues have already started. Maintaining the capacity to predict plagues will have multiple advantages, but this could be strengthened by engaging communities, writes Mathew Abang, a crop production officer at the Food & Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations.


From ‘Voodoo Economics’ to a Well-being Economy, Africa’s Choice

African nations have been importing economic theories to fit realities on the ground, with little to show for it. But it is never too late to adopt a “Well-being Economy,” one that takes stock of opportunities and limits of local resources and external opportunities, writes Desta Mebratu (Prof.) (desta@africaleapfrog.org), CEO of African Transformative Leapfrogging Advisory Service. 


Graduate Population Benefits from Appropriate Management of Money

Ethiopia’s graduate population is expanding thanks to massive investment by the government. It is then up to graduates to find ways to save, invest and grow their wealth by managing money effectively, writes Cassie Steele (cassie.steele@hickorymail.net).


Gov’t Needs to be Clinical about Regulatory Approaches

Lack of proper medication and diagnosis by doctors has eroded the trust in health care provision, costing the nation human and economic loss, write Tigistu Adamu (MD), independent public health consultant and fellow of College of Surgeons of Eastern, Central & Southern Africa (COSECSA), Samson Esseye (MD), consultant surgeon and fellow of COSECSA, and Alemseged Janka (MD), surgeon in private practice.


 Let’s Make Agriculture Attractive to Young Africans

As Africa’s population continues to increase and environmental degradation takes its toll, meeting the food and nutritional demands of the continent will be hard. To address this, governments ought to put in place policies to make agriculture attractive to the youth, write Nomathemba Mhlanga, an agribusiness officer of FAO’s Sub-regional Office for Eastern Africa, and Divine Njie, deputy strategic programme leader of the Food Systems Programme (SP4) at FAO.


Another Year, Another Financial Predicament

The National Bank of Ethiopia has recently made available its fourth-quarter report for the past fiscal year. While the report shows that some headway has been made in deposit mobilisation and monetisation of the economy, there are developments in the financial sector that are worrying, writes Abdulmenan Mohammed (abham2010@yahoo.co.uk), a financial expert with 15 years of experience.


Lessons, Priorities for Africa’s Future Industrialisation

Time and again, industrialisation has been a major policy objective of African governments but with little to show for it. This is because the focus should not only be on building physical infrastructure or aiming to bolster exports, argues Desta Mebratu (Prof.) (desta@africaleapfrog.org), CEO of African Transformative Leapfrogging Advisory Service.


Tobacco Trade: Bad Enough without Illicit Trade

Illicit tobacco trade is deterring efforts to combat hazards to public health. Ethiopia should thus adopt the Protocol to Eliminate Illicit Trade in Tobacco Products of the FCTC, writes Dagim Alemayehu (dagiyealex11@gmail.com), legal expert at the FMHACA.


Tourism Industry Offers Rich Returns if We Invest

Ethiopia has significant potential to create a competitive tourism industry, given the nation’s long history and lingo-cultural diversity. But poor management of the industry is exacting a heavy toll, writes Asrat Begashaw (asratb@gmail.com).


Disruptors – Not Manufacturing Hubs – Make Ethiopia’s Economy Great

Establishing a manufacturing hub is indeed necessary to becoming a lower middle-income country. But in the face of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, Ethiopia’s best bet is human capital, which the government should give greater focus to by improving the educational system, writes Nima Khorrami (n.khorrami.a@gmail.com), a political risk consultant.


Ethiopian Airlines: Beautiful Forest, Fallen Trees

Ethiopian Airlines is the Africa airline with the highest capacity, courtesy of aviation publication Flight Global, but for the aviation industry’s insiders, the picture is not that of a beautiful forest but one of fallen trees, writes Yonathan Menkir Kassa (aeroread@gmail.com), an aviation correspondent.


Financing Hotel Pipe Dreams: Not for the Light-hearted

The future looks promising for the hospitality industry in Ethiopia. But hotel projects are likely to remain pipe-dreams since getting the necessary financing is far easier said than done, writes David Desta (destadavid@gmail.com), a Cornell University graduate from the School of Hotel Administration who has been working in Ethiopia for the past several years.


Transformative Infrastructure: Route to Better Growth Output

The 2018 African Economic Outlook suggests that African countries will continue to develop. Such a growth outlook would be supplemented if the nations matched it with transformative infrastructure development, which takes renewable energy and digitisation into consideration, writes Desta Mebratu (Prof.) (desta@africaleapfrog.org), CEO of African Transformative Leapfrogging Advisory Service.




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