State Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Abraham Tekeste, said on Wednesday (October 9) that Ethiopia's economy grew 9.7 percent in the 2012-13 fiscal year. This was .below the 11 percent initially expected.
The State Minister told reporters that growth had been held back by lower than expected prices for the main exports. Agriculture exports, including the biggest export crop, coffee, fell to less than $3 billion from $3.15 billion the previous year. International prices for coffee declined by about a third during the year under review. The State Minister said that globally, the market for commodities had not been favorable, with both coffee and gold prices declining.
He said the government was working to increase the volume of exports and seek more destinations to boost exports." Ethiopia is midway through the five-year Growth and Transformation Plan which aims to expand the road network to 136,000 kms, by 2015 as well as provide significant public spending on mega-dams and other infrastructure including railways. The State Minister dismissed concerns about whether the government would be able to secure sufficient funding. He said all infrastructure projects had reliable sources of financing, adding that "There is no revision. We will continue to implement our infrastructure projects."