–Diaspora Agency will have head quarter in Addis Ababa
–Branch offices across Ethiopia
–Representatives in Ethiopian embassies
As part of the effort to engage Ethiopians abroad, Ethiopian government announced plans today that it is opening Diaspora Agency.
The decision reflects the special attention that government is giving to Ethiopian Diaspora, Meles Alem who is spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia is cited as saying according to a report by Ethiopian Broadcasting Corporation.
When launched, the agency will be able to facilitate the participation of Ethiopians in the Diaspora, which the ministry of Foreign Affairs thinks is enhancing due to improving political situation in the country, in the overall affairs of Ethiopia.
In terms of organizational structure, Diaspora Agency will be under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. However, it will have its own budgetary and human resources.
Headquarter will be based in Addis Ababa while it will also have branches across the country. Outside of Ethiopia, the agency will have agents within Ethiopian embassies wherever they are.
“There are many countries with advanced experience in coordinating Diaspora participation and that Ethiopia intends to share experiences from those countries,” Meles Alem told journalists during the presser called to announce the decision.
The spokesperson also noted that remittance from Ethiopian Diaspora is now close to $5 billion per annum and that the Ethiopian Diaspora has over $7 billion investment in hotel and tourism in the capital Addis Ababa alone.
In July of this year, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed led a delegation to three US cities (namely Washington, Los Angeles, and Minnesota) for the sole purpose of meeting Ethiopians and encouraged them to visit Ethiopia and participate in the development on the country.
Prime minister also canvassed Ethiopians in the Diaspora to contribute at least a dollar a day to help the effort to develop Ethiopia.
His administration already established accounts for Diaspora Trust Fund. He also named fifteen members Advisory Council for the Trust Fund to ensure accountability and transparency in administering the funds to be raised.
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