I read Aiga’s today’s message in RED regrading METEC. And, I agree with Aiga that EPRDF (and PM Abiy leadership) needs to strengthen METEC, not weaken or destroy it !!!
I think Ethiopia and Ethiopians are proud for having a relatively strong (compared to other African nations) Ethiotelecom, Commercial Bank of Ethiopia, EEPCO, Ethiopian Airlines, etc. institutions, despite a repeated “advise” by neo-colonials to “privatize” these institutions.
And we (Ethiopians) should acknowledge for all governments of Ethiopia before EPRDF and EPRDF itself for their farsighted plans to make us all proud by owning these institutions.
Ethiopians need to celebrate for owning such national institutions that make us free from neo-colonials the same way (or even much better, in my opinion) than we celebrate for the victory of Adwa (and other anti-colonial battle victories).
Based on what I read, I assume METEC’s contribution to Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) is also significant and it was the one that upgraded the original 5000 MW capacity to 6400 MW.
And I truly believe that METEC could be the next “Ethiopian Airlines” that all Ethiopians are proud wherever we are, and could be a big institution that could go out of Ethiopia (to other African countries and other continents) and build things (such as dams, tunnels, etc.).
EPRDF leadership and Ethiopians need to remind ourselves that building such intuitions needs time to become competent, as institution building can not happen in just 5 or 10 years. For example, Ethiopian Airlines took 70+ years to become the airline that we (Ethiopians) are proud now. The same is true for Ethiotelecom, EEPCO, Commercial Bank of Ethiopia, etc.
I think METEC needs more support from the government at this critical time, so that it could build its capabilities and become a national company that we all Ethiopians could be proud of (not only for the current generations but for the generations to come).
In fact, I want to see METEC become involved in more national projects such as in the drilling and exploration of oil and gas (in Ogaden basin and others). Note that, the technology used in oil and gas explorations and production has a lot of similarities with METEC’s expertise.
Of course it needs to jointly work with other capable companies willing to transfer some of the expertise (in some of the complex projects). The best example is what METEC is currently doing in GERD. Another example will be joint venture with capable oil and gas exploration projects currently going on — if EPRDF decided to involve METEC in such project, and I think it should.
I am not sure if METEC needs to joint venture with outside companies for the construction of “Sugar corporations”, as I do not know how complex are these sugar plants. And, I thought METEC already completed few sugar plants at this moment, and encounter a delay for the remaining similar projects (Sugar corporations) for many reasons, including hard currency problem. But if the EPRDF decided to joint venture with outside on such Sugar factory projects, it needs to make sure that METEC gets the capacity and technology transfer it needs to grow.
Similar to EPRDF’s ideology (till recently, and I am not sure if it has changed with the new PM), I am convinced to believe that “developmental state” is the best way for a poor nation like ours to get out of poverty at a relatively short period of time without losing that much national pride, history, culture, etc. And I think METEC will be a significant player in implementing the developmental state if supported well by the EPRDF.