Ethiopia has been one of the world’s fastest-growing economies for the past 15 years, with an average growth rate of almost 11% and a track record of large-scale poverty reduction. Its developmental performance has recently attracted a lot of attention from the international community. Inspired by the East Asian ‘tiger economies’, the Ethiopian government has followed an interventionist economic strategy, which has led to renewed debate on the possibility of African ‘developmental states’.
In this talk, Ato Newai Gebre-ab, one of the chief architects of economic strategy in Ethiopia for the past 25 years, will discuss his experiences at the helm of policymaking. What have been the drivers of Ethiopian development strategy over time? What is the role of agriculture in industrialisation? How can the state shape the structural transformation towards a high-productivity, urban economy? And what are the challenges currently faced by policymakers in promoting job creation in Africa?
About the speaker
Ato Newai Gebre-ab was chief economic adviser to the Prime Minister of Ethiopia between 1992 and 2016. During the 1960s and early 1970s he worked at the Development Bank of Ethiopia and the Planning Commission. He then worked as a consultant in the United Kingdom and served as a staff member or consultant for various United Nations organizations. He returned to Ethiopia in December 1991. Ato Newai earned his undergraduate degree in economics from Haile Selassie University, Addis Ababa, and his B.Litt. degree in economics from the University of Oxford.