Fed Green Lights Foreign Bank Entry


Fed Green Lights Foreign Bank Entry

Following years of speculation, the federal government has decided to allow foreign investors into the financial sector. Last week, the Council of Ministers approved a policy to allow foreign banks to operate in the country. It is the first step in permitting foreign involvement in the financial sector since the Dergue regime forced all foreign banks to cease operations nearly five decades ago. Regulators have been putting measures in place to strengthen domestic banks, whose numbers have swelled to nearly two dozen over the past year. This includes raising the minimum capital threshold by 10 fold to five billion Birr. Some private banks are in the clear. Awash Bank leads its peers with 11 billion Br in subscribed capital. Dashen and the Bank of Abyssinia follow with close to seven billion Birr each. Two months ago, Amhara Bank joined the industry with a cool six billion Birr in paid-up capital, the first bank to achieve such a monumental feat in the first year of operation.


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BLOOM-MELON

Addis Abeba strives to be a city of distinction with a glamorous look. But lately, most parts of the city are overwhelmed by informal street vendors. Underneath the bridge around La Gare, commonly known as Lagahar, a street vendor sells pieces of watermelon from a mobile pushcart. Watermelon is a flowering plant species with more than 1,000 varieties worldwide. It lowers high blood pressure and cholesterol levels when taken regularly. Ethiopia exported 483tns of watermelon to Djibouti in 2018, w...


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THE CITY'S PULSE

Since its establishment during the reign of Emperor Haile Selassie, Meskel Square, on the interseciotn of Africa, Ras Mekonen and Jomo Kenyatta avenues, has been one of the landmarks of Addis Abeba. Having been the site for public gatherings, rallies and festivities like (Meskel celebration), the Square laid out a somewhat classy atmosphere to the city and has become a recreational centre with a mesmerizing look. Following the Beautifying Sheger Initiative, the refurbishment of the Square was in...


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SOOTHING RIDES

Addis Abeba's Stadium neighbourhood has been home to driving and cycling trainees for decades. Homeless children favour the location for its open spaces and high traffic. They ride rented bikes around on a school day. Pangs of hunger are numbed out by riding in circles on top of colourful bikes for the children. They were escaping vicious cycles of poverty on top of bicycles, if only for minutes...