Getahun Mekuria (Dr.-Ing.)

Getahun Mekuria (Dr.-Ing.)

Dear Friends of Innovation, Dear Friends of Technology,

 

The Ministry of Innovation and Technology of Ethiopia is organizing the “Ethiopia Innovate Week 2019” from the 6th to the 12th of June 2019. This unique week will host four independent but complementary events:

  • “ICT Expo” from June 6th to 10th at the Millennium Hall
  • “Startup Ethiopia” on June 8 and 9 at the Millennium Hall,
  • “Innovate Africa Digital” on June 10 and 11 at Sheraton Addis and
  • “National STI Award” on June 12 at the African Union Hall.

Each of the four events is going to showcase and discuss the Digital Transformation Ethiopia aims to achieve.

Seven months ago, the Ministry of Innovation and Technology (MInT) was created through the merger of Ministry of Science and Technology and Ministry of Communication and Information Technology.  MInT is formed with the vision and mission of turning Ethiopia into a country where jobs and wealth are created using innovation and technology. With this in mind, I am proud to highlight some of the achievements MInT has already recorded:

  • eCommerce Proclamation has been completed and will soon be presented to the Cabinet
  • Proclamation for the formation of Ethiopian Communication Regulatory Authority has been forwarded to the Council of Ministers and will soon be voted on by the House of Representatives (HoR),
  • National Bank of Ethiopia recognized Digital Financial Service Providers (DFSP) and will soon issue Directives on how best their operational modalities, and
  • Various initiatives have been launched to bring Digital Transformation to the vast majority of Ethiopians who remain underserved and / or unserved.

For a large country like Ethiopia, the ICT infrastructure required to bring about Digital Governance and Digital Economy is massive and so is the work ahead of us.  Additionally, we are witnessing that our neighboring countries and the developed world are increasingly generating majority of their GDP from the service industry, particularly from the ICT driven service economy.  At MinT, we are putting in place the necessary ecco-system to support Startups in technology areas. Time and again, I am convinced that the future of our Nation is very much dependent on how we support Startups in Technology.  As you attend the events during the “Ethiopian Innovate Week 2019” you will witness the heavy focus on Tech StartUps.

Policy makers, international experts and leading global businesses will gather to discuss and knowledge share under “Innovation Africa Digital” on National Acceleration Agenda for Africa in general and Ethiopia in particular.  This high-level international forum will capture critical technological and policy interventions Ethiopia needs to take to boost its digital landscape.

And finally, following the tradition set by MoST, individuals and institutions will receive awards and recognitions for their work in Science, Technology and Innovation – the award ceremony will take place at the African Union Commission.

The “Ethiopia Innovate Week” will be an annual platform that will keep our country on the path of digital transformation and I could not be more excited to launch this initiative in the year of 2019.  I look forward to welcoming you to the various events and to engaging with as many of you as we work to propel the growth of our country through innovation.

 

Sincerely,

Getahun Mekuria (Dr.-Ing.)
Minister, Ministry of Innovation and Technology,
Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia