Ethiopia Backgrounder

Ethiopia’s image internationally is still shaped by the appalling famine that killed more than half a million Ethiopians in the mid-1980s.  Unexpectedly, however, much of the country is in fact lush and fertile, and these days the country is changing quickly.

China has in recent years invested billions of dollars in Ethiopia’s economy, transforming transportation in particular.  The country now has numerous excellent modern roads and a new railway to Djibouti.  Addis Ababa’s airport is being expanded and modernized, and Ethiopian Airlines is now one of Africa’s best airlines.

Political change is underway too, with a new peace process aiming to draw a line under the longstanding conflict with Eritrea.  Ethiopians are generally friendly and welcoming, and with modernization and improving transport links making it easy to visit the country’s fascinating ancient historical and cultural sites, Ethiopia is ripe for a tourist boom in the near future.  Visit now before too many people get to hear about it!