No Country Can Effectively Confront Climate in the Face of Debt Burden: PM Abiy

Addis Ababa, December  1 /2023 (ENA) No country can effectively confront the climate challenge if debt is a burden, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed noted in his speech to the United Nation’s Climate Change Conference (COP28) today.       

“No country can effectively confront the climate challenge if debt is a burden,” he said, adding that “this is why the G20 must work to implement bolder and timely debt relief plans to help the most affected countries overcome debt distress, address climate change, and pursue more equitable and sustainable economic growth objectives.”

The premier further called upon a collective global action for the stepped up climate agenda as “the battle to protect and heal our planet is a battle for growth and prosperity.”

Ethiopia, on its part, has been taking concrete measures to implement its commitment to the Paris Agreement, according to the prime minister. 

Elaborating on the achievements registered through the implementation of Ethiopia’s Green Legacy Initiative, he stated that the initiative launched in 2019 to establish 130,000 nurseries across the country and annually mobilize millions of people in seedling planting and seedling management.

“Our Green Legacy Initiative represents a proactive response to pressing environmental and socio-economical challenges. It reduced carbon emission preserves our bio-diversity, creates jobs and boosts sectors such as tourism.”

The initiative has received remarkable success by planting 32.5 billion seedlings over the past five years, targeting to plant 50 billion by 2026. 

The premier pointed out that Ethiopia’s Green Legacy Initiative will become the largest afforestation project in the world when completed. 

“The impact of our initiative also extends beyond borders as we are sharing seedlings with our neighboring countries,” he added,

Moreover, the PM mentioned the successful interventions, planting of various drought tolerant crops and using climate smart irrigation-based technology, including the country’s wheat development program. 

“Noteworthy is our national wheat production program whereby we produce 6 million hectares in one year, making Ethiopia the largest wheat producer in Africa.”

This has relieved the country from decades of wheat import dependency and made it a wheat exporting country, the premier revealed. 

Abiy further stated that Ethiopia has been investing extensively in renewable and green energy resources.

With the nation’s target to triple the current power generation capacity and double energy utilization efficiency by 2030, the country will achieve universal access to electricity, minimize dependency on biomass fuel and provide the opportunity for industries to reach net zero targets by 2050. 

Moreover, Ethiopia has adopted policies to encourage the use of electrical vehicles that resulted in a sharp increase of hybrid and electric cars on our roads while reducing the macro-economic burden of importing fuel. 

Similarly, Ethiopian Airlines is modernizing its fleet by acquiring new energy efficient aircrafts, he noted, adding that “we have electrified railways, a growing non-motorized transport infrastructure and we are expanding our mass transit system.”

Prime Minister Abiy said these are concrete examples of action. “We are actually in our national determined contribution and our progress is a testament to our commitment to the Paris Agreement.” 


Ethiopian News Agency