French president set to visit Ethiopia

The President of France Emmauel Macron is set to arrive at Addis Ababa, Ethiopia for two days official state visit.

During his stay President Macron is expected to discuss bilateral and regional issues with Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed of Ethiopia and President Sahle-Work Zewde. In Addition he is also expected to visit Lalibela Rock-Hewn Churches, Ethiopia’s historical site registered by UNESCO as one of the Wonders of the World.

It is recalled that France has recently sent its heritage experts to assess the condition of the Lalibela Rock-Hewn Churches to see how France can help the maintenance of the historical site, which is currently endanger of collapsing. The eleven medieval monolithic cave churches of this 13th-century ‘New Jerusalem’ are situated in a mountainous Amhara Region of Ethiopia have been showing cracks in recent years.

President Macron’s visit has come following the invitation Prime Minister Abiy has made during his visit of Paris last October. In addition to Ethiopia, President Macron is expected to visit Kenya ad Djibouti.

The diplomatic relations between Ethiopia and France dates back to 1907. Official statistics shows that French exports to Ethiopia in 2017 reached a record high of €832.1 million. France had a structural trade surplus of €791.6 million for 2017.