Diaspora’s economic involvement: A boon to domestic efforts
In his inaugural speech Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed boldly vowed that all doors will remain open to embolden active participation of Ethiopian diaspora across different spheres while calling on them to return to homeland with financial and expertise investments.
The Premier's invitation resonated to all Ethiopian Diasporas living across the world whose number is believed to stand more than two million with the majority slice residing in North America, Middle East and Europe. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs recognizing the immense untapped potentials of the diaspora to socio-economic development of their country, came up with various policies and institutional arrangements to create platforms where the Diasporas can engage in. The Diaspora's economic Contribution usually comes as remittance, investment and other supports, says Meles Alem, Spokesperson of the Ministry. Explaining further, Meles states “The amount of remittance, which was only 141 million USD in 2003, has shown impressive increase in 2017, 4.6 billion dollar. Its GDP share also hits over 5 percent. Even in the last three years remittance revenue exceeds that of the export or foreign trade.” Regarding investment, Meles underscores that despite slight improvements, Diasporas involvement falls short compared to their numbers. “More than 4000 members of the diaspora have shown interest and been supported to be engaged in various investment sectors of which manufacturing and other sectors in the last three years.” the Spokesperson adds. He also raises the heartfelt support of the Diasporas in flagship projects like that of The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD). The Ethiopian Diaspora so far purchased 1.3 billion Birr bond. The Middle East residing Diasporas have contributed the largest amount of money, 610 million birr followed by their fellow brothers in Africa and America, an amount of 224 and 196 million Ethiopian Birr respectively, as per the