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Norwegian Ambassador Visits the Amhara Region

Following the high level Tana forum, the Ambassador was able to make an official visit to Bahir Dar and projects in the Amhara region. Hydropower, technical innovation, forestry and education were all high on the agenda in meetings with with the regional President Ato Gedu Andargachew and Dr. Bayile Damtie, President of the Bahir Dar University.

Norway has supported the educational sector in the region for many years and currently facilitates three institutional cooperation programs in the Amhara region between Norwegian universities, the University of Bahir Dar and Juba. The objectives include improving reading abilities and secure quality education in the primary and secondary schools.

Bahir Dar, situated by Lake Tana, has much potential for technological innovation and sustainable growth. Norway is self-sustained with clean electricity because of hydropower and has now stopped further expansion – instead we share the knowledge we have in cooperation with other developing countries. Prior to the meetings with the Amhara regional president and the president of the Bahir Dar University, the Ambassador paid a visit to the Marine Institute of Bahir Dar. Despite being landlocked, Ethiopia has attained much capacity on marine technology and the graduates from the institute are high in demand on the labor market.

The ambassador also made a visit to one of Ethiopia’s four national tree seed centers. Ethiopia and in particular the Amhara region, has experienced heavy deforestation for many years and the seed centers will contribute to tree planting  by developing genetically improved tree species to fit the Ethiopian flora. This is needed in order to reach Ethiopia's ambitious targets for planting new forests. Norway has pledged USD 100 million by 2020 to reducing emissions from forestry in the country. Strengthening the national tree seed system is a prerequisite for success.