Ethiopia is negotiating with Somaliland to use its port in Berbera town, a potential Red Sea access point. The talks with Somaliland are progressing, with a study completed for a dry port in Jigjiga and a service center in Tog Wajale.
Ethiopia’s talks with the Republic of Somaliland about the possibility of using its port in Berbera town are progressing well, the state-owned Ethiopian Press Agency (EPA) has posted on Facebook, quoting a government minister.
Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said in October that access to the Red Sea was “a matter of existence” for his country, remarks which raised anxiety in neighboring countries with coastlines.
Somaliland restored its independence more than 30 years ago but is not recognized by the African Union (AU) or the UN as an independent state.
Ethiopia’s Transport and Logistics Minister, Alemu Sime, briefed a cabinet meeting chaired by Mr. Abiy on the talks, the EPA reported.
Noting that Ethiopia uses the port in Djibouti for 95% of its imports and exports, the minister said efforts were underway to find alternative ports, and talks for the use of Berbera port were progressing well, the EPA added.
According to the EPA, a study has been completed to build a dry port in Jigjiga as well as a service center in Tog Wajale.
The EPA reported that talks with the Kenyan government were also progressing well for the use of Lamu Port.
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