Continental Free Trade Area to Go Active in July

May 4 , 2019

The African Continental Free Trade Area, which aims to create a single continental market for goods and services, will officially enter into force in July. It is expected to start during the next Extra-Ordinary Heads of State and Government summit slated for July 7, 2019 in Niamey, Niger. Ethiopia is one of the signatories of the agreement with South Africa and Egypt; while Nigeria, which has Africa’s biggest economy, has not ratified the convention yet. The Agreement is expected to create a market for over one billion people with a GDP of approximately 2.6 trillion dollars. The African ministers of Trade are also scheduled to meet in Kampala, Uganda in the first week of June to review work on the supporting instruments ahead of the summit.


DDR Initiative Gets 16m Boost

A 16 million euro initiative to facilitate the disarmament, demobilisation, and reintegration (DDR) of nearly 370,000 ex-combatants was launched last week. Financed by the European Union (EU) the program will be implemented across eight regional states. It is overseen by the National Rehabilitation Commission (NRC), the agreement was signed at the Ministry of Finance's headquarters on King George St. Key figures including Semereta Sewasew, state minister for Finance; Teshome Toga, commissioner...


Central Bank Launches Youth Enterprise Forum

A financial education program targeting youth and Medium & Small Enterprises (MSMEs) was launched by the National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE) last week. It aims to equip interested trainees with personal and professional knowledge through experts from banks and microfinance institutions who will provide comprehensive training. The training modules, developed in collaboration with The First Consult and BRIDGE, cover several angles of financial literacy, including deposits, digital financial servic...


ArifPay Takes a Leap with Massive Capital Boost

Shareholders of ArifPay Financial Technologies S.C. have taken a significant stride by resolving to raise the company's paid-up capital to 300 million Br. The decision doubles down from the current 140 million Br marking a substantial increase. ArifPay, was established by 142 shareholders and secured the distinction of being the first payment operator licensed by the National Bank in 2021. CEO Bernard Laurendeau emphasised the critical timing of this capital increase, aligning with the company...