Ethiopia receives 3.4 bln USD in loans, grants in 12 months – Xinhua

ADDIS ABABA, Aug. 17 (Xinhua) — Ethiopia has obtained 3.4 billion U.S. dollars in grants and loans from multilateral and bilateral partners during the 2016/17 Ethiopian Fiscal Year (EFY) that ended July 8.

Speaking to Xinhua on Thursday, Haji Ibsa Communications Director at Ethiopia Ministry of Finance and Economic Cooperation said the financial assistance will be used to execute new or ongoing projects.

The foreign loans and grants covered 18 percent of the 12.7 billion U.S. dollars budget for the 2016/17 fiscal year.

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The East African nation has in recent years been able to mobilize greater amount of tax and non-tax revenue, allowing it to cover more than 80 percent of its budgetary needs.

With its domestic financial ability on the rise, Ethiopia has increased its 2017/18 budget by 9.6 percent to 13.9 billion U.S. dollars.

Ibsa, however, said with Ethiopia’s exports revenue underachieving, earning the country 2.91 billion dollars during 2016/17, lower than the set target of 4.75 billion dollars, Ethiopia has had to make some adjustments.

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It has suspended obtaining commercial loans whose interest rate is higher and whose repayment period is shorter.

Ibsa also dismissed concerns that Ethiopia’s debt to Growth Domestic Product (GDP) ratio is unsustainable, saying that it is now at 23 percent, far lower than the international risk threshold of 56 percent.

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