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Private sector crucial to develop Ethiopia’s capital markets

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The Ethiopian Capital Market Conference, organised by the Standard Bank Group, was held at the Hilton Hotel in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia last month. Image credit: Wikimedia

Private sector crucial to develop Ethiopia’s capital markets

According to Yinager Dessie, governor of the National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE), the private sector will play a crucial role in developing capital markets in Ethiopia.

Dessie spoke at the Ethiopian Capital Market Conference held at the Hilton Hotel in Addis Ababa last month. The conference was organised by the Standard Bank Group as part of Ethiopia’s ambitious Homegrown Economic Reform Plan.

Ethiopia’s Homegrown Economic Reform Plan was launched by the government of Ethiopia in 2019 and was subsequently endorsed by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) with financial assistance of about USD3-billion, in a bid to ensure macroeconomic stability and transform the Ethiopian economy. The reform program has three pillars, including macroeconomic, structural, and sectoral reforms.

Ultimately, the plan seeks to protect social spending and reduce poverty, promote public-private sector partnerships, and create a vibrant Ethiopian financial sector.

Tapping into local opportunities

During the conference’s opening speech, Dessie acknowledged the importance of the private sector in developing capital markets.

“We need and expect the private sector to participate in the capital market actively as issuers, investors, service providers, and market infrastructure providers. On our end, we are launching training and awareness creation campaigns in collaboration with our partners so that the local private sector understands the opportunities and challenges of participating in the capital market,” said Dessie.

“The Ethiopian Capital Market Conference is part of the various capacity building initiatives ensuring that local corporates can fully tap into the opportunities presented by Ethiopia’s capital markets,” said Melesse Tashu, Senior Macroeconomic Advisor to Governor of National Bank of Ethiopia.

In a series of sessions throughout the conference, about 100 participants were trained in business planning, corporate governance, bank funding, private equity, tapping into capital markets, with a particular focus on initial public offering (IPO), and more.

“We were honoured to work with a group that was so eager to learn, to enhance their own business’ capabilities, and who helped us further understand the economic landscape of Ethiopia.

East Africa is rife with investment potential, and if we harness these opportunities, we can promote economic growth and development across the region, and transform the lives of the people living there,” said Taitu Wondwosen, Head of Standard Bank Ethiopia.

The conference precedes the historic launch of the Ethiopian Securities Exchange in the coming year.

Private sector crucial to develop Ethiopia’s capital markets

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