Industry Players Counter the Chambers' Proposed Reform

May 13 , 2023

The national and city chambers and sectoral associations pleaded their case on the proposed amendment of the bill for their re-establishment which has been in the making for the past three years. The ailment of stipulating a regulatory body between the general assembly and boards of directors, the 'unsettling' responsibilities of the Addis Chamber and the Ethiopian Chamber, and the number of board members selected had been hot topics in the discussion. Yohannes Woldegebriel, arbitration institute director at the Addis Chamber of Commerce & Sectoral Association, was in fury because the Ministry of Trade & Regional Integration had failed to tend to the written recommendations submitted over a month ago. "Our inputs were not considered," he said. According to Yohannes, the bill is proposed to strengthen the Ethiopian Chamber & Sectoral Association, which was passive for the past two decades. Bekele Tsegaye, the Chemical and Manufacturers Association president, concurs that the Ethiopian Chamber lacks the competence to be given the power to control businesses and rule over the city chamber. He suggested that the roles of both parties should clearly be considered lest it creates a toxic competition among them. "That will make both grow weaker," he said. Another panellist, Gebrewold Ashengo, a business development specialist, said chambers should not be seen based on their hierarchies but rather on the roles they had played over the years. "This is not a political order," he told Fortune. He recommended the mandate to engage in foreign policies and national agendas should be given to the Addis Chamber as it has played a significant role for the past several years.



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