February 2019

In line with its 2035 economic vision, which is to triple the country’s per capita income, the country has had an engaging month discussing, negotiating and setting pace for projects that would translate to economic gain. To start, Ethiopia and Djibouti finally signed the long-awaited pipeline deal that permits China’s Poly-GCL company to build a natural gas pipeline, a liquefaction plant and an export terminal at the country’s border with Somalia. The USD 4 billion investment is said to be the most expensive project ever built in the Horn of Africa and will benefit both Ethiopia and Djibouti. Similarly, consultative meetings kicked off this month in anticipation of the implementation of the 36TB data cable connecting Kenya and Djibouti. The 4000km long cable dubbed DARE 1 (Djibouti Africa Regional Express) will increase data access in the region eventually bringing the region closer to the regional economy. In hindsight, noting the overall vision, both the Chinese Vice President, Wang Qishan and Foreign Minister, Wang Yi met with Djibouti’s minister of Foreign Affairs, Mahamoud Ali Youssouf to reiterate the strategic partnerships that are being sorted as well as enforce the building and implementation of the Belt and Road Initiative.

On a humanitarian front, haunted by last months capsized boat, much of this month has been spent recovering the bodies from the shipwreck, assisting the migrants find a way back home and setting up security measures to enhance the Red Sea Front.


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