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Ethiopian Airlines to Open its Hotel and Airports for Sale to Foreign Investors
July 25, 2018
Ethiopian Airlines to Open its Hotel and Airports for Sale to Foreign Investors


25 July, 2018

According to the Bloomberg report, Ethiopian Airlines Enterprise is emerging as the flag bearer of plans by Ethiopia, Africa’s fastest-growing economy, to open up to foreign investors after decades as a closed shop.

While new Prime Minister of Ethiopia, Abiy Ahmed’s ruling politburo has said a minority stake in the continent’s largest carrier could be up for grabs, Tewolde

GebreMariam, Chief Executive Officer, Ethiopian Airlines now adds that related assets such as airports and a five-star hotel could also be sold off. That would give investors an opportunity to take ownership in businesses that were nationalised in the 1980s under the former Communist Derg regime.

Ethiopia needs about USD 7.5 billion to finish current infrastructure projects and is also battling foreign-exchange shortages, Abiy said earlier this month. The sale of airline-owned real estate may be easier and quicker than, for example, a privatization of the much coveted Ethio Telecom monopoly, which the Horn of Africa nation plans to split in two and sell down following two years of study.
Below is the list of assets highlighted by Tewolde as ripe for sale:

• Ethiopian Skylight Hotel: What will be the country’s largest hotel has five stars and is being built near the international airport in Addis Ababa. “The first stage of foreign participation will be the hotel,” said Tewolde. “We want expertise, capital in the hotel. We have finished first phase, but there will be second phase.”

• Ethiopian Airports Enterprise: The carrier owns 23 domestic airports, according to its website, from Addis Ababa to Arba Minch. Additionally, the airline develops and operates airport shopping centers, cafeterias, banking kiosks, internet services and parking facilities.

• Aerospace Manufacturing: To extend Ethiopian’s Maintenance, Repair & Overhaul Services, negotiations are under way with companies including Boeing Co., Airbus SE,
Bombardier Inc and Safran SA, according to Tewolde.