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Embracing the Potentials of Intermodal Transport in Ethiopia: Strategies to Facilitate Export-Led Growth

Nitsche, Benjamin

Ethiopia has one of the fastest growing economies in the world, and by 2025 Ethiopia aims to become the manufacturing hub of Africa. To maintain growth, the Ethiopian government heavily supports industrial development in different industry sectors. However, Ethiopia is still a developing, low-income country that has to overcome several barriers in order to attract foreign companies to become a middle-income country. Therefore, efficient intermodal transport is seen as one of the key contributors to facilitating export-led growth. This study seeks to map the current state of intermodal transport in Ethiopia by synthesizing a holistic picture of current challenges and to propose strategies for dealing with them. A moderated nominal group technique (NGT) exercise was applied among 38 experts from local manufacturing industries, domestic and international logistics services, academia, and associations as well as governmental and non-governmental institutions. Through the NGT process, the study condenses 19 challenges for intermodal transport in Ethiopia that are grouped into eight different clusters and assesses the importance of resolving those challenges in order to facilitate logistics performance. Moreover, strategies are proposed to improve the current state of intermodal transport and assessed according to their effectiveness and complexity. Consequently, recommendations and implications for four stakeholder groups are given: (1) governmental institutions; (2) non-governmental institutions; (3) foreign investors/manufacturers and local manufacturers; as well as (4) local and international logistics service providers.
Published in: Sustainability, 10.3390/su13042208, MDPI