Solidaridad celebrates first year of sustainable development in Ethiopia

Solidaridad staff and experts are celebrating a year of growth and sustainable development in Ethiopia since the opening of the new country office in 2016. The new office allows Solidaridad to expand its activities in Ethiopia in growing sectors and to explore new opportunities where long-lasting positive change can truly make a difference.

A land of opportunities

Ethiopia is rapidly growing and currently becoming one of the fastest growing economies in Africa and in the world. Priority is given to developing industry sectors and agriculture which should generate jobs for millions of people and put most of the population out of poverty. The goal is to become a middle-income country by 2025. However, fast economic growth can also lead to uncontrolled and unsustainable growth.

Taking stock

To ensure a sustainable and inclusive growth of several sectors, Solidaridad opened a country office in Ethiopia to become a partner of the government and private sector to promote sustainability.

Solidaridad expanded activities in the coffee sector in Oromia region to pilot new innovations linked to gender inclusivity and to professionalize cooperatives.

In addition, Solidaridad established a new textiles programme called the Better Mill Initiative in the garments industry to support local factories in cleaner production and improved labour conditions. To ensure that sustainable cotton is being purchased by the local factories, Solidaridad started a pilot in cotton with H&M to promote better cotton. The cotton initiative is linked to the Better Mill Initiative to promote an integrated supply chain from field to fashion.

Expanding to new sectors

Solidaridad is also conducting scoping assessments in the leather and dairy industries. The livestock sector represents huge opportunities given the large cattle population in Ethiopia and the priority of the government to this sector.

Solidaridad was granted a fund from the World Bank to conduct a scoping assignment with Wageningen University to develop proposals for climate-smart and profitable dairy systems in Oromia. This study is almost finalized with the intention to develop new and innovative pilots in the dairy sector that promote sustainable and inclusive growth.

Learn more about Solidaridad programmes in East & Central Africa.