Italian Prime Minister Signs 696 Mln Birr Loan and Grant Agreement in Ethiopia

ItalyItalian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte arrived in Ethiopia on Thursday 11 October for a two-day working visit. After Ethiopia, he will travel to Eritrea where he will meet President Isaias Afewerki.

PM Conte’s mission wants to be a support to the peace deal signed between Ethiopia and Eritrea last July after nearly 20 years of stalemate.

Italy’s prime minister praised Ethiopia as a “pillar of stability” in the Horn of Africa region. Giuseppe Conte is the first Western leader to visit Ethiopia since the restoration of diplomatic ties in July.

Conte discussed migration as well as investment opportunities in Ethiopia, one of the world’s fastest-growing economies.

In a joint appearance at the National Palace, Conte warmly encouraged Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed to continue with the sweeping political and economic reforms that have been announced since Abiy took office in April.

Ethiopia and Italy have also signed a 696-million-birr loan and grant agreement aimed at improving urban water and sewerage services. The agreement targets to improve urban water and the sewerage service at different levels.

158 million birr of the total is in grant agreement and the remaining 538 million birr is in the form of long-term loan.

The agreement will be implemented jointly by Italian Development Cooperation and Water, Irrigation and Electricity Ministry.