Ethiopia’s national air carrier, Ethiopian Airlines is one of the sole factors that has bolstered the Ethiopia – India trade and economic ties, as revealed by Demeke Atnafu, Ethiopia’s Consulate-General to India.
The presence of the airline has bridged the business gap between the two countries, facilitating trade and investment opportunities.
The Ethiopian is Africa’s most competitive airline with over 100 destinations across the five continents. It possesses a fleet size of 108 enabling the airline to operate effectively and efficiently. The fleet size has facilitated the growth of the company beyond the African continent adding a tally to its network.
The Ethiopian operates double daily flights from Addis to Mumbai and Delhi. It also serves almost 11 more destinations in India enhancing the air transport for both goods and people. The Horn of Africa country is also targeting the Indians as it set to boost the tourism sector and Ethiopian Airlines will be the bait to work the magic.
Ethiopia and India have worked together in various sectors of investment including agriculture and infrastructure. Last year, India and Ethiopia signed agreements for cooperation in trade and communication sectors with India to provide a credit line to the tune of $95 million to Ethiopia for an electric transmission line.
According to official documents the two countries currently engage in nearly $1billion in bilateral trade, while foreign direct investment from India reached $5 billion in 2017 which is surprisingly higher than China’s investment amounting to $4 billion as of 2018.
According to the United Nations COMTRADE database on international trade, Ethiopia imports from India was $1.43 billion in 2016. Iron and steel, cereals and pharmaceuticals account for 14 percent, 13 percent and 11 percent of the total imports from India.
About 7.4 percent of Ethiopia’s total import comes from India while the country’s export to India stands at $65 million. Both parties are determined to invest more for mutual benefits.