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Addis Ababa airport – a view into a parallel world

This week, on my way to and from Nairobi for a media conference, I had a stopover at Addis Ababa Bole International Airport, in the Ethiopian capital. Trump’s election, Brexit and louder nationalist voices in Europe have me, like many, worried about the future of civilisation and commerce as we’ve come to know them over the past 50 years. But the four hours I spent waiting for my next flight provided some comfort: there is a parallel world still very much interested in cross-border trade and new business relationships.

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Ethiopia Chose Economic Growth Over Inclusion

Nearly a year since the Oromia protests began, and despite efforts by the Ethiopian government to hide the ugly suppression on its own citizens from the rest of the world, it has culminated into a state of emergency for the next six months to restore order in restive Oromia and Amhara regions. The decision to put one of Africa’s fastest growing nation on lock-down came after three incidents that are likely to redefine one of the continent’s silent massacres where economic and political marginalization has for months been met with brutal force and resulted in the deaths of hundreds of people.

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Could Ivanka Trump shoes soon be made in Ethiopia?

Could the manufacturing of Ivanka Trump’s shoe line move to Ethiopia?

The brand, owned by the daughter of US presidential candidate Donald Trump, is produced by Chinese shoe manufacturer Huajian Group, which is steadily moving its production from its home market to Ethiopia. This means that the Ivanka Trump brand could soon also be made in the African country. It’s spokespeople did not respond to our emailed questions. Huajian opened its first Ethiopian factory in 2012 and is now completing a massive US$400m shoe-manufacturing facility on the south-western outskirts of Addis Ababa, according to Bloomberg. The park is reportedly shaped like a woman’s shoe.

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