By John Ikani
Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has announced a shakeup at the top of the country’s central bank, replacing the apex bank boss in an effort to stabilize the nation’s economy and curb inflation.
Outgoing Governor Yinager Dessie, who had held the position since 2018, will be replaced by Mamo Mihretu, who previously served as the Prime Minister’s economic advisor and later as the head of Ethiopian Investment Holdings, a sovereign wealth fund that manages state-owned corporations such as Ethiopian Airlines and Ethio Telecom.
The change in leadership comes as Ethiopia grapples with high inflation rates, which have remained above 20% since 2020 and reached a staggering 33% last year.
Dessie’s tenure as governor was marked by the devaluation of the country’s currency, the birr, against the dollar.
Mihretu, who takes over as governor of the National Bank of Ethiopia, brings a wealth of experience to the role, having previously managed one of the country’s largest sovereign wealth funds.
He is seen as a steady hand who can help stabilize the country’s economy and bring inflation under control.
In addition to the central bank governor change, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed also announced the appointment of four new ministers to take recently vacated positions, including the ministries of mines and transport.
All appointments are subject to approval by the lower house of parliament.
The reshuffle at the top of Ethiopia’s central bank is being seen as a bold move by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed to address the country’s economic challenges head-on and restore stability to the country’s financial system.
With Mihretu at the helm, many are optimistic that the country’s inflation crisis can be brought under control and the economy can be put back on a path of growth and development.