World Bank cuts Ethiopia GDP forecast to 6.3% for 2020 fiscal year

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ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) – The World Bank has cut Ethiopia’s economic growth forecast to 6.3% for the 2020 fiscal year, down from an earlier estimate of 9.0%, citing the growing debt burden of state-owned firms and a worsening security situation.

Ethiopia’s central bank earlier this week forecast the economy would expand by 10.8% in its 2019/20 fiscal year that ends in July, up from 9% in the previous year.

Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, who came to power in 2018, has started ambitious economic reforms aimed at opening up one of Africa’s fastest-growing but most closed economies.

The government says the first sector to be liberalised will be telecoms.

It plans to issue two telecoms licences to multinational mobile companies this year, ending a state monopoly. It has also pledged to gradually liberalise its exchange rate.

Ethnic violence in Ethiopia has displaced more than 2.7 million people over the past two years.

Reporting by Dawit Endeshaw; Writing by George Obulutsa; Editing by Maggie Fick and Alison Williams

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Godwin Okafor is a Financial Journalist, Internet Social Entrepreneur and Founder of Naija247news Media Limited. He has over 16 years experience in financial journalism. His experience cuts across traditional and digital media. He started his journalism career at Business Day, Nigeria and founded Naija247news Media in 2010. Godwin holds a Bachelors degree in Industrial Relations and Personnel Management from the Lagos State University, Ojo, Lagos. He is an alumni of Lagos Business School and a Fellow of the University of Pennsylvania (Wharton Seminar for Business Journalists). Over the years, he has won a number of journalism awards. Godwin is the chairman of Emmerich Resources Limited, the publisher of Naija247news.

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