Country Snapshot

Population (2019, millions)¹112.1
Population Projections (2030, millions)¹144.94
Economically active population in agriculture (as % of Economically active population)12, 201984.1
CapitalAddis Ababa
Surface Area (km²)²1,104,300
Weather¹¹In Addis Ababa: Hottest months, April-May, 10-30°C; coldest month, December, 5-23°C; driest month, December, 5 mm average rainfall; wettest month, August, 300 mm average rainfall
Languages³Official: Amharic (national), Oromo (State of Oromiya), Somali (State of Sumale), Tigrigna (State of Tigray), Afar (State of Afar), etc. - Others: English, Sidamo, Wolaytta, Gurage, Hadiyya, Gamo, Gedeo, Opuuo, Kafa, Arabic and others
Main Religions³Main: Ethiopian Orthodox and Muslim - Others: Protestant, Catholic, traditional and others
Time⁴Eastern Africa Time (EAT) +0300 UTC
Driving Orientation⁵Right Side
Internet Country Code⁶.et
Country Calling Code+251
Plug, Socket and Voltage⁷ Type C, F and L -  220V/50 Hz
CurrencyBirr (ETB) - 1/100 = Santim
Exchange Rate (As of 28 January 2019, per USD)⁸28.40 (buy rate)
GDP at Market Prices (2018, current, billions of USD)⁹84.35
GDP Growth (2018, annual %)⁹6.81
Average GDP Growth (2014-2018, annual %)⁹9.27
GDP per Capita, PPP (2018, current international $)⁹2,018
Inflation, Consumer Prices (2017, annual %)⁹9.84
Average Inflation, Consumer Prices (2013-2017, annual %)⁹8.54
Total Reserves in Months of Imports (2017)⁹1.85

¹United Nations Population Division, Department of Economic and Social Affairs.
²COMESA Statistics, COMESTAT Data Hub.
³CIA World Factbook.
⁴Time and Date Portal.
⁵Chartsbin Portal, "Worldwide Driving Orientation by Country".
⁶Wikipedia, "List of Internet top-level domains"; and, Internet Assigned Numbers Authority, Root Zone Database.
⁷International Electrotechnical Commission, World Plugs.
⁸National Bank of Ethiopia.
⁹World Bank, World Development Indicators 2019.
¹¹Economist Intelligence Unit.
12AFDB Socio Economic Database

Reasons to Invest in Ethiopia

Source: Ethiopian Investment Commission - EIC. 


Population Projections (millions)

Population (2019)112.07
Population Projections (2030)144.94

Source: United Nations Population Division, Department of Economic and Social Affairs.

Population Residing in Urban Areas (%)

Population Projections (2019)21.22
Percentage of Population Residing in Urban Areas (2030)26.85

Source: United Nations Population Division, Department of Economic and Social Affairs.

Youth Literacy Rates (2017, %)

Youth Literacy Rate, Population 15-24 Years, Both Sexes 72.75
Youth Literacy Rate, Population 15-24 Years, Female 71.97
Youth Literacy Rate, Population 15-24 Years, Male 73.52

Source: United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, UNESCO Institute of Statistics.


Unemployment (2018, % of Total Labour Force, Modeled ILO Estimate)

Unemployment, Total 1.8
Unemployment, Female 2.41
Unemployment, Male 1.27

Source: World Bank, World Development Indicators 2019.

Labour Force (2017, % of Ages 15+, Modeled ILO Estimate)

Labour Force Participation Rate, Total 80.3
Labour Force Participation Rate, Female 74.23
Labour Force Participation Rate, Male86.5
Labour Force, Total (number)51,941,541

Source: World Bank, World Development Indicators 2019.

Economy - Overview


GDP at Market Prices (current, billions of USD)55.6164.4674.2781.7184.35
GDP Growth (annual %)10.2510.399.439.56.81

Source: World Bank, World Development Indicators 2019.

Value Added by Sector (% of GDP)

Manufacturing  7.396.46
Industry 34.5923.84
Services 44.8148.75
Construction 26.1115.80
Electricity, gas and water 0.870.93
Mining and quarrying 0.230.66
Education 4.373.27
Finance, real estate and business services 8.5810.22
Public administration and Defense5.455.18
Health and Social Work1.391.16
Other services2.833.07
Transport, storage and communication  4.785.54
Wholesale and retail trade, hotels and restaurants18.9621.59

Source: AFDB Socio Economic Database.

Trade Profile

Import Partners (Imported Value, thousands, USD)

United States of America671,234923,9221,652,3971,233,9301,579,509

Source: International Trade Center COMTRADE Statistics.

Export Partners (Exported Value, thousands, USD)

Saudi Arabia198,316163,779152,427179,376136,486
United Arab Emirates111,20279,22485,492120,973102,752
United States of America129,046169,338144,128163,98166,318

Source: International Trade Center COMTRADE Statistics.

Ethiopia’s Top import Products (USD ‘000)

 All products    16,141,056     17,391,198     17,472,848     15,733,042     14,897,144 
84Nuclear reactors, boilers, machinery and mechanical appliances; parts thereof       2,044,208        2,355,899        2,629,335        2,797,570        2,315,560 
27Mineral fuels, mineral oils and products of their distillation; bituminous substances; mineral waxes       3,488,850        2,126,602        1,815,828        1,557,550        1,486,078 
85Electrical machinery and equipment and parts thereof; sound recorders and reproducers, television image and sound recorders and reproducers, and parts and accessories of such articles       2,054,791        2,852,874        2,048,923        1,394,810        1,175,815 
87Vehicles other than railway or tramway rolling-stock, and parts and accessories thereof       1,363,884        1,612,136        1,490,974        1,470,890           871,040 
88Aircraft, spacecraft, and parts thereof          113,421           119,524           556,626           311,950           830,500 

Source: COMSTAT database

Ethiopia’s Top Export Products (USD ‘000)

 All products    4,140,302     1,993,585     1,984,781     2,284,111     1,537,874 
09Coffee, tea, mate and spices        833,011         667,598         642,313         808,114         387,387 
12Oil seeds and oleaginous fruits; miscellaneous grains, seeds and fruit; industrial or medical plants; straw and fodder        684,088         428,555         487,629         422,853         323,268 
07Edible vegetables and certain roots and tubers        576,200         195,299         235,638         258,915         279,278 
02Meat and edible meat offal          81,723           94,681           94,679           99,297         101,176 
41Hides and skins (other than furskins) and leather          91,067           87,052           68,373           75,787           50,327 

Source: COMSTAT database

Investment Profile

FDI Inflows (millions of USD)

FDI Inflows 1,855 2,627 3,989 4,017 3,310 

Source: United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, World Investment Report 2019

FDI Inward Stock (millions of USD)

FDI Inward Stock 8,310 10,937 14,926 18,943 22,253 

Source: United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, World Investment Report 2019

FDI Inflows Main Source Countries (in terms of number of projects)

China, United States, India, UAE, UK, Turkey, Germany, South Africa, Egypt, and Kenya.

Source: Financial Times, fDi Markets, 2018

FDI Inflows Main Sectors (in terms of number of projects)

Textiles, Financial Services, Food and Tobacco, Chemicals, Communications, Business Services, Automotive OEM, Pharmaceuticals, Pharmaceuticals, and Building and Construction Materials. 

Source: Financial Times, fDi Markets, 2018

FDI Inflows Main Companies (in terms of number of projects)

Chongqing Lifan Industry, Libya Oil Ethiopia, Transsion Holdings (Tecno Telecom), CHT/BEZEMA Group, Black Rhino, Hela Clothing, Petronas, ZTE, Dow Chemical, and Wilmar International.

Source: Financial Times, fDi Markets, 2018

Doing Business

Overall Doing Business Ranking


Source: World Bank, Doing Business, 2020

Starting a Business

2020 Rank168/190
Procedures (number)11
Time (days)32
Cost (% of income per capita*)45.4
Paid-in Minimum Capital (% of income per capita*)0.0

*GNI per capita used: USD 790
Source: World Bank, Doing Business, 2020

Paying Taxes

Paying Taxes

2020 Rank132/190
Payments (number per year)29
Time (hours per year)300
Total Tax Rate (% of profit)37.7
Profit Tax (% of profit) 24.6
Labor Tax and Contributions (% of profit)12.4
Other Taxes (% of profit)0.7

Source: World Bank, Doing Business, 2020

Trading Across Borders

2020 Rank156/190
Time to Export: Border Compliance (hours)51
Cost to Export: Border Compliance (USD)172
Time to Export: Documentary Compliance (hours) 76
Cost to Export: Documentary Compliance (USD)175
Time to Import: Border Compliance (hours) 72
Cost to Import: Border Compliance (USD) 120
Time to Import: Documentary Compliance (hours) 194
Cost to Import: Documentary Compliance (USD) 750

* It is assumed that shipment travels from a warehouse in the largest business city of the exporting economy to a warehouse in the largest business city of the importing economy.
* It is assumed that each economy imports a standardized shipment of 15 metric tons of containerized auto parts (HS 8708) from its natural import partner—the economy from which it imports the largest value (price times quantity) of auto parts. It is assumed that each economy exports the product of its comparative advantage (defined by the largest export value) to its natural export partner—the economy that is the largest purchaser of this product.
* A shipment is a unit of trade. Export shipments do not necessarily need to be containerized, while import shipments of auto parts are assumed to be containerized.
* Shipping cost based on weight is assumed to be greater than shipping cost based on volume.
* If government fees are determined by the value of the shipment, the value is assumed to be $50,000.
* The mode of transport is the one most widely used for the chosen export or import product and the trading partner, as is the seaport, airport or land border crossing.
* Time is measured in hours, and 1 day is 24 hours.
* Costs do not include tariffs.
Source: World Bank, Doing Business, 2020

Investment Regime

Legal Framework

Investment Code – The Investment proclamation No. 769/2012

Key guarantees in terms of investment protection include:

Source: United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, iGuide Ethiopia.

Investment Incentives

General incentives

Tax incentives 

To encourage private investment and promote the inflow of foreign capital and technology into Ethiopia, the following incentives are granted to both domestic and foreign investors engaged in qualifying areas: 

• Bonded manufacturing warehouse schemes. 

Source: KPMG, Burundi Fiscal Guide 2018 and Deloitte, Guide to Fiscal Information, Key Economies in Africa 2018