In partnership with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), the Government of Ethiopia has officially embarked on a long-term program to combat deforestation and integrate sustainability in the coffee sector.
With additional funding from the Washington DC-based Global Environment Facility (GEF), the joint project has a budget of USD 20.8 million, with plans to run from 2023-2031, according to the UNDP.
Called “Preventing Forest Loss, Promoting Restoration, and Integrating Sustainability into Ethiopia’s Coffee Value Chains & Food Systems,” the project is designed to prevent deforestation, promote reforestation and provide market support for Ethiopian coffee producers.
The Ethiopia coffee project is one of 26 different country projects under the name FOLUR (“Food. Land Use. Restoration.”) Together, they comprise billions of dollars in public and private investments with a focus on large-scale production landscapes for agricultural products such as coffee, cocoa, corn, coffee, livestock, palm oil, rice, soy and wheat.
Ethiopia Minister of Planning and Development Fitsum Assefa led the inauguration of the FOLUR project in Ethiopia’s capital city Addis Ababa yesterday.
The project formally adopts Ethiopia’s new integrated land use policy while seeking to improve the livelihoods of approximately 440,000 people. The project aims to restore 10,500 hectares of unproductive coffee lands, while restoring and managing 60,000 hectares of key forest land.
The Ethiopia FOLUR project is being implemented in 22 woredas of four regions: Oromia, Sidama, Central Ethiopia and Southwest region.
Despite political, logistical and climate-related challenges affecting the Ethiopian coffee industry in recent years, coffee remains the country’s leading source of export revenue, generating approximately 30-35 percent of the country’s overall share, according to one recent report.
(Daily Coffee News)
Ethiopian Cargo expands freighter network to include Casablanca
Ethiopian Cargo and Logistics Services has announced it is expanding its freighter services to include Casablanca, Morocco.
In a LinkedIn post on January 4, 2024, the carrier said it had “finalized preparations” to launch the freighter services on January 9, 2024.
Details regarding the aircraft type, frequency, or schedule for the new route have not yet been revealed.
Ethiopian Cargo operates 12 dedicated freighters including nine Boeing B777-200LRF and three Boeing B737-800F, and specializes in the transportation of various special and important cargo such as live animals, perishable goods, and medical products.
It is one of the largest cargo network operators in Africa and has a modern warehouse with one million tons of storage capacity.
(Aviation business news)
Ethiopian Immigration and Citizenship Service calls for Documentation Rectification
The Ethiopian Immigration and citizenship Service (ICS) has urged all foreign nationals and Ethiopians residing in the country without proper documentation to rectify their residency status. The call to legalize documents comes amid concerns over the number of individuals living in the country with either fraudulent or no residence documents.
Selamawit Dawit, director general of the Service, disclosed in a statement that a significant number of individuals reside in Ethiopia without legal documentation. Many foreign nationals have been identified possessing forged permanent and temporary residence permits, passports, visas, and other documents, residing in various regions of the country.
The Director revealed findings from an investigation, citing over 18,000 fake temporary residence permits, more than 1,500 fake visas, and over 1,800 Ethiopian-born citizens lacking proper documentation.
In response to these findings, the Service has announced a legalization period from January 10 to February 8, urging those affected to regularize their documents within this timeframe. Simultaneously, efforts are being made to develop and update the electronic passport (e-passport) system to meet the evolving needs of Ethiopian citizens.
Middle-distance athlete survives attempted murder
Ethiopian athlete Tadesse Lemi survived a reported assassination attempt in Sululta town as he was driving to his residence on December 31, 2023.
The alleged assassins blocked the road the athlete was taking and bumped his vehicle before the attempted murder, sources said.
Tadesse was rescued by traffic police officers who arrived at the spot unexpectedly. It was said that the traffic police officers watched the vehicle of the assassins fleeing the area before they were caught.
Tadesse said that the attempt on his life was the fourth time it happened. He further said that his friends rescued him from one of the plots planned in the jungle, where he was having his regular training.
SAHCO takes over Ethiopian airlines ground handling services
Skyway Aviation Handling Company (SAHCO) Plc has won the contract to take over the ground handling services to one of the world’s foremost airlines, Ethiopian Airlines at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja, Lagos. SAHCO would be providing Ramp handling services, Cargo handling services and Warehousing services and other aviation related services to the airline starting from January 1, 2024.
Although SAHCO has been responsible for providing Cargo Handling and Warehousing services to Ethiopian Airlines from 2016 in Lagos, and full handling in Kano, the procurement of state-of-the-art equipment, fitted with the latest technology, coupled with its well trained and customer friendly staff, have made them pick SAHCO as their new preferred handler at the Cargo Ramp in Lagos.
According to the Managing Director/CEO, SAHCO, Basil Agboarumi, “SAHCO’s choice as the preferred ground handling company for full Ethiopian Airlines’ operations at the Cargo Ramp in Lagos is due to its pedigree and brilliant track record over the years. We have displayed a high level of professionalism according to global best practices. This has instilled the trust and confidence which has influenced their decision to move their ground handling contract to us.”
He hinted further that with the business partnership between SAHCO and Ethiopian Airlines, customers would be assured of speedy, safe and seamless ramp and cargo movements as they do business with the airline.
Hamdok renews call for direct talks with al-Burhan to end Sudan’s war
Former Sudanese Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok, head of the Civil Forces Coordination (Taqqadum), has once again urged the Commander-in-Chief of the Sudanese Armed Forces, Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, to meet with the Coordination to discuss a ceasefire and peace efforts.
In late December, Hamdok sent two letters to both al-Burhan and the commander of the Rapid Support Forces (RSF), Mohamed Hamdan Daglo “Hemetti,” proposing a meeting with the coordination’s leaders to address the ongoing conflict in Sudan.
While Hemetti responded favorably and met with coordination representatives in Addis Ababa on January 2, the army has yet to respond to Hamdok’s call.
The meeting between the RSF and the coordination resulted in the “Addis Ababa Declaration,” which outlines a commitment to a ceasefire if the army agrees to the measures. Hemetti also pledged to release 451 prisoners of war and open humanitarian corridors for aid delivery.
In contrast, Deputy Chairman of the Sovereign Council Malik Aqar has refused to meet with the coordination, denying receiving any request for a meeting. He has also criticized the Addis Ababa Declaration, characterizing it as an agreement between partners.
Responding to these statements, Hamdok stated on the X platform, “Today, I called on the Commander-in-Chief of the Sudanese Armed Forces to accept the request for a direct meeting with the Coordination of Civilian Democratic Forces (Taqqadum).”
Hamdok emphasized the opportunity to cease hostilities, as expressed in the Addis Ababa Declaration, where the RSF has expressed its readiness for a ceasefire through direct negotiations with the army.
“We must not waste this opportunity for peace and do our best to stop the war and build sustainable peace in our beloved country,” Hamdok stressed.
He reiterated the coordination’s commitment to a peaceful solution, stating, “We extend our clean hands to reach a peaceful, negotiated solution, and we hope that the warring parties will respond to this so that we can relieve the suffering of our people and build our homeland on a new foundation that makes the April 15 war the last of Sudan’s wars, to be followed by a sustainable peace.”
JEM faction leader slams Addis Ababa Declaration
Mansour Arbab, the leader of the newly split Justice and Equality Movement, expressed strong criticism of the “Addis Ababa Declaration” signed between the Rapid Support Forces and the Coordination of Civil Democratic Forces, led by former Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok. Arbab described the declaration as a legitimization of the Rapid Support Forces’ terrible crimes against unarmed civilians.
In an interview with Radio Tamazuj on Thursday, Arbab downplayed the success of the Addis Ababa Declaration.
The declaration, signed by Mohammed Hamdan Dagalo and Abdallah Hamdok, aimed to work towards stopping the ongoing conflict.
Arbab contended that the document was a modified version of their constitutional document, which, according to him, ignited the war in Sudan, leading to genocide, forced displacement in Darfur, and attacks on Khartoum and the island.
Arbab criticized the Tagaddum coalition, considering it as the Rapid Support Forces’ partner that ignores their violations committed against unarmed civilians. Arbab expressed doubt about the political and moral qualifications of the Coordination of Civil Democratic Forces (Taqaddum) to present an initiative to stop the war in Sudan.
He suggested that if the coalition wants to reform the situation in Sudan, they must convince the RSF to cease the war, surrender weapons, and integrate their forces into the Sudanese army. Arbab emphasized the importance of bringing those responsible for violations to justice.