Report: Ethiopia ripe for Telecom investment

Christie Christelis, President of Technology Strategies International

According to a report by Canadian research firm Technology Strategies International, Ethiopia’s telecommunication market is rapidly expanding and is expected to reach almost 20 million mobile subscribers by 2014, at a 43% annual growth rate.

The report, titled “Investment Opportunities in the ICT Sector in Ethiopia: 2010” and conducted by Technology Strategies International in partnership with BroadGroup TMT Ventures, shows Ethiopian ICT market as favourable to investment opportunities, predicting by 2011, the privatization of state-owned Ethiopian Telecommunications Corporation (ETC), followed by the liberalization of the mobile market.

“The Ethiopian Government recognizes that the country is being left behind in terms of digital inclusion, and urgently needs to address this if it wants to reap the benefits that other African countries have demonstrated from embracing ICTs”, noted Christie Christelis, President of Technology Strategies International, adding that ICT strategy may also become an important political issue in the next elections.

According to Christelis, liberalization of telecoms and banking in Ethipia is necessary for creating investment opportunities in the country. “The Chinese have already recognized the potential of Ethiopia and are building an electronics manufacturing facility to address the high growth expected in demand for handsets and accessories. They are also providing supplier financing in certain telecommunications investments in order to address the shortage of domestic capital”, she said.

The 37 page report looks at the investment opportunities in the ICT sector in Ethiopia and future trends in fixed line communications, mobile communications and internet usage, commending that the next four years will be critical in shaping the Ethiopian ICT sector’s future.

Denisa Oosthuizen


  1. Am i missing something here? ETC is never going to be privatized in the near future. Sure the government tried to introduce a new management for the company from France but that’s it. There is no sign of liberalization or privatization. Its a kind of good news I have waiting to hear for long time now. But as far as the ruling party (EPRDF) is concerned i don’t think they will give ETC up to private sector. They think there is a lot at stake both economically and politically. If any one is in Ethiopia, please try to access blogspot [dot] com and you will get the picture. Everything has to be locked tight and closely monitored with a ruthless firewall. And having it under government hand makes it easy to do just that. In addition to that the company with its poor management , it has managed to hit more that 4billion birr in revenue last year. The government doesn’t want to give that up.

  2. I agree with David. They will never give ethiopian telecom market away, at least unimaginable in the near future.

    Consequently, ethiopians continue to pay more than any other neighbouring countries (even Somalia) for mobile communication and internet remain backward again as compared just the surrounding countries

    They didn’t yet get their bellies full. Ethiopians get poorer and EFFORT gets richer. Business as usual.

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