The economic liberalization process being undertaken in the Country and the strong commitment of the Government to create a supportive environment for the development of the private sector have positively affected export growth. Exports increased by 24% in 1996/97 over the preceding year.

Apart from the conducive and continually improving free market oriented policy environment, Ethiopia has various advantages for the development of its export sector. These include the abundant and capable labour force, low wage levels, a wide-ranging weather and soil conditions, preferential access to the European Union markets and proximity to the Middle-East markets. The preferential access to the Common Market for Eastern and Southern African States (COMESA) with a total population of more than 260 million also offers substantial market opportunities for several export items from Ethiopia.

At present, the major export products of Ethiopia include coffee, livestock products (leather, live animals and meat), oil seeds and pulses, fruits, vegetables and flowers, textiles, natural gum, spices and mineral products. In addition to the efforts underway to increase the export supply of these products and to improve their quality, investments in other currently unexploited, higher value-added, export sectors is highly encouraged. Recognizing that large capital investments are needed to exploit these resources, various incentives are currently provided to encourage foreign investments (including joint ventures and marketing arrangements) so that the sector provides meaningful contribution to the Country’s development.


In 1996/97 Ethiopia exported 118,000 tons of coffee, which is valued at about US dollars 340 million. More than 90% of the nation’s coffee harvested is organically produced.

The inherently superior quality of Ethiopian highland arabica coffee is unmatched, particularly in flavor and aroma. Ethiopia also produces several types of coffee, the water soluble extracts of which can be used for hot beverages, iced drinks, ice creams and in the confectionery industries.


Livestock Products

Ethiopia offers a wide range of processed and semi-processed hides and skins to the world market. Some of the products, such as Ethiopian highland sheepskin (which has gained international reputation for making gloves), are known for their quality and natural characteristics.

The high quality Ethiopian hides and skins exports include.

  • Pickled sheep skin
  • wet blue sheep skin
  • crust sheep skin
  • wet blue goat skin
  • crust goat skin
  • crust cow hides
  • finished garment leather
  • finised glove leather
  • lining/upper leather
  • suede leather
  • full grain leather
  • corrected grain leather
  • embossed leather
  • patent leather

The export of finished leather and leather products (such as leather garments, foot wear, gloves, bags and other leather articles) is also highly promising.

Live Animals and Meat

With the largest livestock population in Africa, Ethiopia has an ample supply base for the export of live animals and meat. Its livestock resources are estimated at 27 million cattle, 24 million sheep and 18 million goats.

Livestock husbandry is mostly carried out under natural grazing, making the meat and meat products obtained from the animals very tasty and nutritionally healthy for human consumption. Ethiopia’s main exports of live animals and meat products include :

Steers and yearlings;

Low land sheep and goats;

Fresh and chilled lamb and mutton carcass;

Fresh and chilled goat carcass;

Fresh and chilled veal carcass and beef four quarter;

Fresh and chilled boneless veal and beef;

Frozen lamb, mutton, goat carcass, veal and beef special cuts; etc.


Oilseeds and Pulses

Ethiopian oilseeds and pulses are known for their flavour and nutritional value as they are mostly produced organically. For instance, the Ethiopian white sesame seed is used as a reference for grading in international markets.

Ethiopia has exported 78 thousand tons of oilseeds and 20 thousand tons of pulses in 1996 / 97.

Major oilseeds and pulses exports :

  • sesame seed
  • nigger seeds
  • linseeds
  • sunflower seeds
  • groundnuts
  • rape seeds
  • castor oil seeds
  • pumpkin seeds
  • haricot beans
  • pea-beans
  • horse beans
  • chick peas
  • beans
  • lentils

The Gulf states (Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Israel), European Union, some Asian and neighboring African countries constitute the major markets for Ethiopia’s oilseeds and pulses exports.

Fruits, Vegetables and Flowers

With a favorable climate, abundant abour, land and water resources, most regions of the Country are suitable for the production of a wide range of tropical and sub - tropical fruits, vegetables and flowers.

The major vegetable export products are: Potatoes, Green beans, Okra, Melon, White and Red Onion, Shallots, Cabbage, Leeks, Beetroot, Carrots, Green Chile, Tomatoes and Lettuce. The main exportable fruits are Orange, Mandarin Grape fruit, Mango, Guava, Lemon & Lime, while cut flower exports include Statice, Allium, Roses and Carnations.

Detail information about Fruits, Vegetables and Flowers 2011 expo please visit the following website.


Show Hours:

Wednesday March 23, 2011

10:00 a.m. - 10:30 p.m. - official opening
10:00 a.m. - 06:00 p.m. - show hours

Thursday, March 24, 2011

10:00 a.m. - 06:00 p.m. - show hours

Friday March 25, 2011

10:00 a.m. - 06:00 p.m. - show hours

Exhibition Programme:

Thursday March 24, 2011

8:00 a.m. - 12:00 a.m. (Midnight)
Wednesday Night Buyers & Vendors Party.

Thursday March 24, 2011

8:45 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Farm Tour Programme; visiting 4 Exhibiting Flower Farms.

Textile Fabrics and Garments

The textile industry is the largest manufacturing industry in the Country. There are more than fourteen state owned and private major textile and garment factories. It employs about 30,000 workers having a share of 36% of the manufacturing industry.

The main textile products manufactured in the Country are cotton and nylon fabrics, acrylic yarn, woolen and waste cotton blankets and sewing thread.

The cotton yarn and thread products include :

Yarn/bleached or grey/ combed or carded 81/2, 10, 21 30, 40, 50, 60, 80 counts and others as per the requirements of customers.

Pure polyester and cotton sewing thread in different colours and counts :

  • 40/3, 50/3, 60/3 pure cotton;
  • 60/3, 100% polyesters;
  • 5,000 or 1,000meters in spool;
  • 5,000 or 10,000 meters in cones for industrial use; etc.

The domestic potential of cotton production as basic raw material is far more than the demand of the current installed spinning capacity and the availability of cheap labour is one of the major parameters for considering this industrial sector as one of the strategic industries for export development.

Natural Gum

Ethiopia is endowed with distinct climatic conditions which enables it to grow diverse plant species used for industrial and pharmaceutical purposes. Acacia, Commiphora & Boswellia could be mentioned as one group of the various plant species grown in the arid and semi-arid areas yielding important gums.

The trend which has enhanced the growth of gum production / use over the past decade has been the increasing consumption of convenience foods. As in most other sectors of the additives industry, increasing health consciousness has tended to fuel growth for thickeners of natural origin.

Gum Olibanum derived from Boswellia, Gum Myrrh, and Oppoponex derived from

Commiphora and Gum Arabic derived from Acacia species are the major gum products produced mainly for the export market.

Apart from their pharmaceutical applications, these products have a wide-range of industrial uses in areas such as beverages, candies, chewing gums, confectioneries, dairy products, gelatins, nut products, puddings and canned vegetables. Typical applications include their uses as:

adhesive thickeners;

thickeners, stabilizers, flavour, fixatives and emulsifying agents in food products;

clarification in beverages;

release agents for rubber products;

formulations in cosmetics;


Gum Myrrh

Gum Olibanum

Gum Oppoponex

Gum Arabic


The quality of tea mainly depends on climatic conditions, the type of soil upon which the plant grows and the

method of processing. In Ethiopia, tea is mostly grown in the highland dense forest regions where the land is fertile and thus the use of fertilizer is very minimal.

Moreover, the availability of abundant and cheap labour in the Country has made the use of manual weeding, instead of chemical weeding, possible. Because of this mostly organic cultivation, Ethiopian tea is increasingly sought for its aroma and natural flavours. This is confirmed by the "International Gold Star" award for quality recently given by B.D.I. in Madrid, Spain to one of the major Ethiopian tea exporters, Tea Production and Marketing Enterprise

Mineral Products

According to studies so far conducted, there are diversified mineral deposits available in many parts of the Country, most of which can meet export standards. Minerals so far supplied to export markets include gold, platinum, marble, granite, and tantalum, though in a very limited scale as compared to the immense potentials. Other metallic and non-metallic substances, including copper, lead, zinc, silver, gypsum, limestone, quartz and pyrite are also identified in various parts of the Country.

Most of Ethiopian mineral products are potentially exportable to countries in East and

Southern Africa, and in the Asia / Oceania market area as, in both of these regions, because of the freight cost advantage over established exports from Europe and North America.

Ethiopia has also recently entered into the export of high quality dimensional stones, i.e. different types of unprocessed (blocks) and processed marble, granite and lime stones suitable for both internal and external uses.


Rosegreen Marble

Pink Granite

Purple Marble


Some other products that Ethiopia exports to the world market include :

  • Spices
  • Civet
  • Beverages
  • Beeswax
  • Gall-stone
  • Cereals
  • Fish

Last Updated (Thursday, 17 February 2011 18:11)