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Doing Business in East Africa


Ethiopia's population of approximately 84 million makes it one of the largest markets in Africa. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita was about $471 in 2013. Ethiopia ranks 127th out of 185 countries in the World Bank's Ease of Doing Business report 2013.

Agriculture accounted for 44% of GDP and employed over 80% of the population. Approximately 80% of Ethiopia's population lives in rural areas. Ethiopia's major exports include coffee, oil seeds, gold, flowers, pulses, and live animals. Coffee is the leading export, constituting 26% of total exports by value in FY 2011/12 followed by gold, which comprised 19% of total exports.

The country's main imports include petroleum products, machinery, metal products, agricultural and industrial chemicals, fertilizers, medical and pharmaceutical products, and food grains. The major sources of Ethiopian imports in FY 2011/12 were: China (16.6%), Saudi Arabia (14%), India (8.4%), Kuwait (4.3%), Japan (4%) and United States (4%). The U.S. was the sixth largest import source, providing mainly grain and aircraft to Ethiopia.

U.S. businesses in Ethiopia are primarily involved in the following industries: aircraft sales, construction equipment, equity investments, real estate, agricultural machinery, farming, and engineering services.

For more details on Doing Business in Ethiopia, read the Ethiopia Country Commercial Guide, at this link: Country Commercial Guide

Leading Sectors for U.S. Export and Investment

  • Renewable Energy
  • Road Construction
  • Tourism
  • Telecommunications
  • Aviation

Contact Us

Cheryl Monticello

Commercial Officer

Embassy of the United States Addis Ababa

P.O.Box 1014

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Tel: +251 (0) 11130-6588

Phone: +251 (0) 11124-2420

Email: MonticelloCD@state.gov

Website: http://ethiopia.usembassy.gov

Francis Peters

Commercial Counselor

U.S. Commercial Service

U.S. Embassy, Nairobi

Tel: +254 (20) 363-6424

Fax: +254 (20) 363-6065

E-mail: Francis.Peters@trade.gov

Website: www.export.gov/kenya

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