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News: Trade Bureau says Addis Abeba hit by sugar shortage, Ministry pledges to overcome supply problem

Addis Abeba – The Addis Abeba City Administration Trade Bureau has announced that the capital city is hit by severe shortage in the supply of sugar products in the city.

Mesfin Assefa, he deputy head of the bureau, told ruling party run media that although the quota allocated to the city was 120, 000 quintals, the quantity of sugar supplied to the city during the past four months is less than half of the quota.

Kumneger Ewnetu, Public Relations and Communications Executive at the Ministry of Trade and Regional Integration corroborated the complaint on the shortage of sugar supply to the city is true, and said it was due to lack of government subsidized sugar supply the the city.

Kumneger further said that in order to overcome the supply problem, the Ministry is planning to have a discussion with sugar importers in the near future; the ministry had held fruitful discussions with sugar factories in Ethiopia, according to Kumneger.

The PR executive also said that 200, 000 tones of sugar is expected to arrive in Ethiopia between 24 December 2022 and 08 January 2023 through the Sugar Corporation; the current shortage of sugar production will also be fixed after 08 January, according to the news.

In February this year, Fincha Sugar Factory, one of the biggest sugar factories in Ethiopia whihc is located in Horo Guduru Wollega zone of Oromia regional state, was forced to stop production for a week because truck drivers refused to travel to the area due to safety concerns, resulting in the fuel shortage according to the Ethiopian Sugar Corporation. The factory, which has the capacity to produce 2.7 million quintals of sugar and 20 million liters of ethanol annually, resumed production after a week, but the security crisis in the area has since gotten worse.

The government has announced in November 2019 that it was in the process of conducting evaluations, including technical and social impact assessments and validation of factories covering all the thirteen sugar projects in Ethiopia, with plans to privatize six of them in the first quarter of the year 2020. But there has been no progress so far, and sugar shortages keep recurring frequently. AS

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