Ajay Banga, the newly elected president of the World Bank, made his first visit to Africa, choosing
Ethiopia as his inaugural destination since assuming office two months ago. During his two-day
visit Banga held discussions with Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD), Finance Minister Ahmed
Shide, and other officials.
The visit aimed to strengthen ties and explore opportunities for collaboration in the midst of
Ethiopia's ongoing economic reforms.
Accompanied by the Prime Minister, Banga also toured thriving manufacturing factories, gaining
firsthand insight into Ethiopia's industrial progress.
Despite a previous exchange at the Paris summit in June 2023, where both leaders debated their
respective tenures' productivity, Banga commended Ethiopia for its steadfast commitment to key
development goals despite significant challenges, including the recent conflict in northern Ethiopia.
Banga pledged to resume support for Ethiopia, which had been temporarily halted due to the
conflict. Prime Minister Abiy emphasized the WB's crucial role in Ethiopia's economic growth.
He called for an expanded partnership, encompassing increased concessional financing, robust
investment financing through the International Finance Corporation (IFC), and support for
Ethiopia's ambitious Home-Grown Economic Reform (HGER 2.0) agenda.