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Ethiopia opened a second diplomatic mission in Gedarif, Sudan one of the strongest allies and economic partner of Ethiopia.
The new consulate general that is under the Ethiopian Embassy in Khartoum is open and operating in Gedaref, a district in the Eastern part of Sudan close to the Ethiopian boarder.
Abadi Zemo, Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Ambassador to Sudan, said that the new diplomatic consulate will expand the relations of the two nations further.
“The area is one of the major locations for border trading between the two countries, so the trade will be expanded and exchanges will be easier than the current condition,” he added.
The establishment of the new consulate is deemed to contribute to growing investment around the border area, according to the Ethiopian diplomatic chief in Sudan, who is also a veteran TPLF fighter.
Ambassador Abadi said the two countries have signed several agreements to expand their relations in all sectors.
Ethiopia has more than one diplomatic mission in China, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Germany and USA, while the new office in Sudan will be the first additional mission office in a single country in Africa. Ethiopia has an embassy in Mogadishu and two consulate generals in the self-declared states of Garowe and Hargeisa, the capitals of Puntland and Somaliland respectively.
Ethiopia has three consulate generals in China in addition to the embassy in the capital Beijing. In total, Ethiopia has diplomatic missions in 38 countries and four mission offices that handle multilateral organizations including the mission for the African Union in Addis Ababa.
Currently, Ethiopia exports up to 100mw electric power to Sudan. Abadi said that Sudan will get an additional 200mw electric power when Gibe III becomes operational.
Since Ethiopia commenced the mega electric power generator project, the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), on Abay (Nile) River in 2013, Sudan has given its strong support.
Gedaref lies midway between the Sudanese capital Khartoum and Gallabat, a small town near the Ethiopian border. The route that starts from Gallabat and passes through Gedaref to Port Sudan was the major trade route from the Nile to Ethiopia until the mid 19th century. Gedaref is the main exit door for Ethiopian agricultural products exported via Port Sudan to the Middle East and Asia while Ethiopia imports benzene from Sudan via the same route.
The two countries have also agreed to establish an economic integration, one that is similar to the multifaceted initiative Ethiopia and Djibouti had launched across various economic and social sectors.
Recently, Sudan has given free storage area to Ethiopia in Port Sudan which will minimize costs for Ethiopia on logistics and transportation.
Ethiopia imported 50,000 tons of fertilizer via Port Sudan to the Amhara and Tigray regions this year, which is the first import item Ethiopia has brought in via the Sudanese port, according to Ambassador Abadi. Ethiopia has never imported goods thought this ancient trade line despite its long history of being a main trade route for Ethiopian exports since the Abyssinian period.
Ethiopia wants to augment its use of Port Sudan for its imports, according to Ambassador Abadi.