December 3, 2008


Ethiopia flag
Ethiopia (ET)
Population: 82,544,840

Unique among African countries, the ancient Ethiopian monarchy maintained its freedom from colonial rule with the exception of the 1936-41 Italian occupation during World War II. In 1974, a military junta, the Derg, deposed Emperor Haile SELASSIE (who had ruled since 1930) and established a socialist state. Torn by bloody coups, uprisings, wide-scale drought, and massive refugee problems, the regime was finally toppled in 1991 by a coalition of rebel forces, the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF). A constitution was adopted in 1994, and Ethiopia's first multiparty elections were held in 1995. A border war with Eritrea late in the 1990s ended with a peace treaty in December 2000. The Eritrea-Ethiopia Border Commission in November 2007 remotely demarcated the border by geographical coordinates, but final demarcation of the boundary on the ground is currently on hold because of Ethiopian objections to an international commission's finding requiring it to surrender territory considered sensitive to Ethiopia.

Ethiopia map
Landlocked - entire coastline along the Red Sea was lost with the de jure independence of Eritrea on 24 May 1993; the Blue Nile, the chief headstream of the Nile by water volume, rises in T'ana Hayk (Lake Tana) in northwest Ethiopia; three major crops are believed to have originated in Ethiopia: coffee, grain sorghum, and castor bean.

Location:Eastern Africa, west of Somalia
Geographic coordinates:8 00 N, 38 00 E
Area:total: 1,127,127 sq km
land: 1,119,683 sq km
water: 7,444 sq km
Size comparison: slightly less than twice the size of Texas
Land Boundaries:total: 5,328 km
border countries: Djibouti 349 km, Eritrea 912 km, Kenya 861 km, Somalia 1,600 km, Sudan 1,606 km

Coastline:0 km (landlocked)
Maritime claims:none (landlocked)
Climate:tropical monsoon with wide topographic-induced variation
Terrain:high plateau with central mountain range divided by Great Rift Valley

Elevation extremes:lowest point: Denakil Depression -125 m
highest point: Ras Dejen 4,533 m

Natural resources:small reserves of gold, platinum, copper, potash, natural gas, hydropower

Land use:arable land: 10.01%
permanent crops: 0.65%
other: 89.34% (2005)

Irrigated land:2,900 sq km (2003)
Natural hazards:geologically active Great Rift Valley susceptible to earthquakes, volcanic eruptions; frequent droughts

Current Environment Issues:deforestation; overgrazing; soil erosion; desertification; water shortages in some areas from water-intensive farming and poor management

International Environment Agreements:party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Ozone Layer Protection
signed, but not ratified: Environmental Modification, Law of the Sea

Population:82,544,840 note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality, higher death rates, lower population growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2008 est.)

Age structure:0-14 years: 46% (male 18,922,334/female 19,017,593)
15-64 years: 51.4% (male 20,749,002/female 21,656,509)
65 years and over: 2.7% (male 947,323/female 1,252,077) (2008 est.)
Median age:total: 16.9 years
male: 16.6 years
female: 17.2 years (2008 est.)

Population growth rate:3.212% (2008 est.)
Birth rate:43.97 births/1,000 population (2008 est.)
Death rate:11.83 deaths/1,000 population (2008 est.)

Net migration rate:NA note: repatriation of Ethiopian refugees residing in Sudan is expected to continue for several years; some Sudanese, Somali, and Eritrean refugees, who fled to Ethiopia from the fighting or famine in their own countries, continue to return to their homes (2008 est.)

Sex ratio:at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.96 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.76 male(s)/female
total population: 0.97 male(s)/female (2008 est.)

Infant mortality rate:total: 82.64 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 94.08 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 70.87 deaths/1,000 live births (2008 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:total population: 54.99 years
male: 52.54 years
female: 57.51 years (2008 est.)

Total fertility rate:6.17 children born/woman (2008 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:4.4% (2003 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:1.5 million (2003 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths:120,000 (2003 est.)

Nationality:noun: Ethiopian(s)
adjective: Ethiopian

Ethnic groups:Oromo 32.1%, Amara 30.1%, Tigraway 6.2%, Somalie 5.9%, Guragie 4.3%, Sidama 3.5%, Welaita 2.4%, other 15.4% (1994 census)

Religions:Christian 60.8% (Orthodox 50.6%, Protestant 10.2%), Muslim 32.8%, traditional 4.6%, other 1.8% (1994 census)

Languages:Amarigna 32.7%, Oromigna 31.6%, Tigrigna 6.1%, Somaligna 6%, Guaragigna 3.5%, Sidamigna 3.5%, Hadiyigna 1.7%, other 14.8%, English (major foreign language taught in schools) (1994 census)Literacy:definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 42.7%
male: 50.3%
female: 35.1% (2003 est.)

Country name:conventional long form: Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia
conventional short form: Ethiopia
local long form: Ityop'iya Federalawi Demokrasiyawi Ripeblik
local short form: Ityop'iya
former: Abyssinia, Italian East Africa
abbreviation: FDRE

Government type:federal republic
Capital:name: Addis Ababa
geographic coordinates: 9 02 N, 38 42 E
time difference: UTC+3 (8 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

Administrative divisions:9 ethnically based states (kililoch, singular - kilil) and 2 self-governing administrations* (astedaderoch, singular - astedader); Adis Abeba* (Addis Ababa), Afar, Amara (Amhara), Binshangul Gumuz, Dire Dawa*, Gambela Hizboch (Gambela Peoples), Hareri Hizb (Harari People), Oromiya (Oromia), Sumale (Somali), Tigray, Ye Debub Biheroch Bihereseboch na Hizboch (Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples)

Independence:oldest independent country in Africa and one of the oldest in the world - at least 2,000 years

National holiday:National Day (defeat of MENGISTU regime), 28 May (1991)
Constitution:ratified 8 December 1994, effective 22 August 1995

Legal system:based on civil law; currently transitional mix of national and regional courts; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

Suffrage:18 years of age; universal

Executive branch:chief of state: President GIRMA Woldegiorgis (since 8 October 2001)
head of government: Prime Minister MELES Zenawi (since August 1995)
cabinet: Council of Ministers as provided for in the December 1994 constitution; ministers are selected by the prime minister and approved by the House of People's Representatives
elections: president elected by the House of People's Representatives for a six-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held 9 October 2007 (next to be held in October 2013); prime minister designated by the party in power following legislative elections
election results: GIRMA Woldegiorgis elected president; percent of vote by the House of People's Representatives - 79%

Legislative branch:bicameral Parliament consists of the House of Federation (or upper chamber responsible for interpreting the constitution and federal-regional issues) (108 seats; members are chosen by state assemblies to serve five-year terms) and the House of People's Representatives (or lower chamber responsible for passing legislation) (547 seats; members are directly elected by popular vote from single-member districts to serve five-year terms)
elections: last held 15 May 2005 (next to be held in 2010)
election results: percent of vote - NA; seats by party - EPRDF 327, CUD 109, UEDF 52, SPDP 23, OFDM 11, BGPDUF 8, ANDP 8, independent 1, others 6, undeclared 2
note: some seats still remain vacant as detained opposition MPs did not take their seats

Judicial branch:Federal Supreme Court (the president and vice president of the Federal Supreme Court are recommended by the prime minister and appointed by the House of People's Representatives; for other federal judges, the prime minister submits to the House of People's Representatives for appointment candidates selected by the Federal Judicial Administrative Council)

Political parties and leaders:Afar National Democratic Party or ANDP; Benishangul Gumuz People's Democratic Unity Front or BGPDUF [Mulualem BESSE]; Coalition for Unity and Democratic Party or CUDP [AYELE Chamisso] (awarded to AYELE by the National Electoral Board on 11 January 2008, but AYELE has virtually no support among former CUD MPs, other CUD MPs must now be affiliated with their original CUD-precursor parties); Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front or EPRDF [MELES Zenawi] (an alliance of Amhara National Democratic Movement or ANDM, Oromo People's Democratic Organization or OPDO, the South Ethiopian People's Democratic Front or SEPDF, and Tigrayan Peoples' Liberation Front or TPLF); Gurage Nationalities' Democratic Movement or GNDM; Oromo Federalist Democratic Movement or OFDM [BULCHA Demeksa]; Omoro People's Congress or OPC [IMERERA Gudina]; Somali People's Democratic Party or SPDP; United Ethiopian Democratic Forces or UEDF [BEYENE Petros]

Political pressure groups and leaders:Ethiopian People's Patriotic Front or EPPF; Ogaden National Liberation Front or ONLF; Oromo Liberation Front or OLF [DAOUD Ibsa]


Diplomatic representation in the US:chief of mission: Ambassador Samuel ASSEFA
chancery: 3506 International Drive NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 364-1200
FAX: [1] (202) 587-0195
consulate(s) general: Los Angeles
consulate(s): New York

Diplomatic representation from the US:chief of mission: Ambassador Donald Y. YAMAMOTO
embassy: Entoto Street, Addis Ababa
mailing address: P. O. Box 1014, Addis Ababa
telephone: [251] 11-517-40-00
FAX: [251] 11-517-40-01

Executive branch:chief of state: President GIRMA Woldegiorgis (since 8 October 2001) head of government: Prime Minister MELES Zenawi (since August 1995) cabinet: Council of Ministers as provided for in the December 1994 constitution; ministers are selected by the prime minister and approved by the House of People's Representatives elections: president elected by the House of People's Representatives for a six-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held 9 October 2007 (next to be held in October 2013); prime minister designated by the party in power following legislative elections election results: GIRMA Woldegiorgis elected president; percent of vote by the House of People's Representatives - 79%

Ethiopia's poverty-stricken economy is based on agriculture, accounting for almost half of GDP, 60% of exports, and 80% of total employment. The agricultural sector suffers from frequent drought and poor cultivation practices. Coffee is critical to the Ethiopian economy with exports of some $350 million in 2006, but historically low prices have seen many farmers switching to qat to supplement income. The war with Eritrea in 1998-2000 and recurrent drought have buffeted the economy, in particular coffee production. In November 2001, Ethiopia qualified for debt relief from the Highly Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) initiative, and in December 2005 the IMF voted to forgive Ethiopia's debt to the body. Under Ethiopia's constitution, the state owns all land and provides long-term leases to the tenants; the system continues to hamper growth in the industrial sector as entrepreneurs are unable to use land as collateral for loans. Drought struck again late in 2002, leading to a 3.3% decline in GDP in 2003. Normal weather patterns helped agricultural and GDP growth recover during 2004-07.

GDP (purchasing power parity):$56.05 billion (2007 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate):$19.43 billion (2007 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:11.1% (2007 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP):$700 (2007 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:agriculture: 47%
industry: 13.2%
services: 39.8% (2007 est.)

Labor force:27.27 million (1999)
Labor force - by occupation:agriculture: 80%
industry: 8%
services: 12% (1985)

Unemployment rate:NA%
Population below poverty line:38.7% (FY05/06 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:lowest 10%: 3.9%
highest 10%: 25.5% (2000)

Distribution of family income - Gini index:30 (2000)
Inflation rate (consumer prices):17.2% (2007 est.)
Investment (gross fixed):25.9% of GDP (2007 est.)
Budget:revenues: $3.231 billion
expenditures: $3.785 billion (2007 est.)

Public debt:44.5% of GDP (2007 est.)
Agriculture - products:cereals, pulses, coffee, oilseed, cotton, sugarcane, potatoes, qat, cut flowers; hides, cattle, sheep, goats; fish

Industries:food processing, beverages, textiles, leather, chemicals, metals processing, cement

Industrial production growth rate:11% (2007 est.)

Electricity - production:2.864 billion kWh (2005)
Electricity - consumption:2.577 billion kWh (2005)
Electricity - exports:0 kWh (2005)
Electricity - imports:0 kWh (2005)

Oil - production:7.334 bbl/day (2005 est.)
Oil - consumption:29,000 bbl/day (2005 est.)
Oil - exports:0 bbl/day (2004)
Oil - imports:28,460 bbl/day (2004)
Oil - proved reserves:428,000 bbl (1 January 2006 est.)

Natural gas - production:0 cu m (2005 est.)
Natural gas - consumption:0 cu m (2005 est.)
Natural gas - exports:0 cu m (2005 est.)
Natural gas - imports:0 cu m (2005)
Natural gas - proved reserves:23.9 billion cu m (1 January 2006 est.)

Current account balance:-$826.8 million (2007 est.)
Exports:$1.288 billion f.o.b. (2007 est.)
Exports - commodities:coffee, qat, gold, leather products, live animals, oilseeds
Exports - partners:Germany 8.4%, Saudi Arabia 7.1%, US 7%, Djibouti 6.7%, China 6.6%, Italy 6.6%, Japan 5.9%, Netherlands 4.9% (2007)

Imports:$5.165 billion f.o.b. (2007 est.)
Imports - commodities:food and live animals, petroleum and petroleum products, chemicals, machinery, motor vehicles, cereals, textiles

Imports - partners:Saudi Arabia 17%, China 15.9%, India 7.8%, Italy 5.1% (2007)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:$1.294 billion (31 December 2007 est.)
Debt - external:$2.621 billion (31 December 2007 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares:$NACurrency (code):birr (ETB)

Exchange rates:birr per US dollar - 8.96 (2007), 8.69 (2006), 8.68 (2005), 8.6356 (2004), 8.5997 (2003) note: since 24 October 2001, exchange rates are determined on a daily basis via interbank transactions regulated by the Central Bank

Fiscal year:8 July - 7 July

Telephones in use:880,100 (2007)
Cellular Phones in use:1.208 million (2007)

Telephone system:general assessment: inadequate telephone system; the number of fixed lines and mobile telephones is increasing from a very small base; combined fixed and mobile-cellular teledensity is only about 2 per 100 persons
domestic: open-wire; microwave radio relay; radio communication in the HF, VHF, and UHF frequencies; 2 domestic satellites provide the national trunk service
international: country code - 251; open-wire to Sudan and Djibouti; microwave radio relay to Kenya and Djibouti; satellite earth stations - 3 Intelsat (1 Atlantic Ocean and 2 Pacific Ocean)

Radio broadcast stations:AM 8, FM 0, shortwave 1 (2001)
Television broadcast stations:1 (plus 24 repeaters) (2001)
Internet country
Internet hosts:89 (2007)
Internet users:291,000 (2007)

Airports:84 (2007)
Airports (paved runways):total: 15
over 3,047 m: 3
2,438 to 3,047 m: 5
1,524 to 2,437 m: 5
914 to 1,523 m: 1
under 914 m: 1 (2007)

Airports (unpaved runways):total: 69
over 3,047 m: 3
2,438 to 3,047 m: 5
1,524 to 2,437 m: 11
914 to 1,523 m: 29
under 914 m: 21 (2007)

Railways:total: 699 km (Ethiopian segment of the Addis Ababa-Djibouti railroad)
narrow gauge: 699 km 1.000-m gauge
note: railway under joint control of Djibouti and Ethiopia but remains largely inoperable (2006)

Roadways:total: 36,469 km
paved: 6,980 km
unpaved: 29,489 km (2004)

Merchant marine:total: 9
by type: cargo 8, roll on/roll off 1 (2008)

Ports and terminals:Ethiopia is landlocked and uses ports of Djibouti in Djibouti and Berbera in Somalia

Military branches:Ethiopian National Defense Force (ENDF): Ground Forces, Ethiopian Air Force (ETAF) (2008) note: Ethiopia is landlocked and has no navy; following the secession of Eritrea, Ethiopian naval facilities remained in Eritrean possession

Military service age and obligation:18 years of age for compulsory and voluntary military service; theoretically, no compulsory military service, but the military can conduct call-ups when necessary and compliance is compulsory (2008)

Manpower available for military service:males age 16-49: 17,666,967
females age 16-49: 17,530,211 (2008 est.)

Manpower fit for military service:males age 16-49: 10,060,775
females age 16-49: 9,854,710 (2008 est.)

Source: / CIA - The World Factbook

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