Commercial Bank of Ethiopia now owns the tallest building in East Africa
Commercial Bank of Ethiopia on Sunday inaugurated its new headquarters building in the capital Addis Ababa.
The tallest building, not just in the country, but also in the rest of East Africa, stands at 209 metres high. It is constructed on 165,476 square metres of land along Yohanis Street.
It has a total of 53 floors. The total construction is, based on state media reports, is US$ 303. 5 million dollars.
It took nearly six years for China State Construction Overseas Development Co. Ltd to complete the project.
The new structure has commerce centres including a shopping mall, cinema, spa, gyp, cafeteria, children’s place and conference centre among other things.
The inauguration ceremony is made to coincide with the 80th anniversary of what has become Commercial Bank of Ethiopia. It started as “State Bank of Ethiopia” in 1942 during the imperial Haileselassie government.
The inauguration was attended by senior government officials, including Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed. Regional state presidents attended the event.
Commercial Bank of Ethiopia’s starting capital was, according to the sources, one million Maria Theresa (silver bullion coin). Currently, the bank is said to have about 1.1 trillion birr in assets and over 34 million active customers across Ethiopia. CBE is planning to lend 100 billion birr during the current fiscal year.
It is delivering service in 1,795 branches. Over 200 branches in the Afar and Amhara regions of Ethiopia were destroyed by the TPLF forces when they occupied many areas in those regions last year.
1.1 trillion Ethiopian birr fetches about US $22 billion dollars in the current exchange rate. When the TPLF took power with the support of the US government in 1991, one $US dollar was exchanging to about 2.5 Ethiopian birr. Now, $1 USD fetches about 50 Ethiopian birr.
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