Isabeau Vilandre, Director of the SUMM Project, CIRDI

MACIG Connect Series

The Canadian International Resource and Development Institute (CIRDI) explains how it is working with the Ethiopian Ministry of Mines to develop the country’s mining sector.

CIRDI is an organization created with the support of the federal government of Canada that has projects in Latin America, Asia and in Africa. What is the organization’s mandate and how does the SUMM project help to achieve that objective?

CIRDI is an expression of Canada’s evolving role in developing countries through the sharing of Canadian expertise and experience to governments that request support for global and systematic reforms of their natural resource sector to result in sustainable natural resource management. CIRDI’s mission is to exchange knowledge and expertise with developing countries that enables leading-practice natural resource governance, environmental stewardship, gender equality and ultimately, poverty reduction.

Our projects are designed and delivered collaboratively to meet the needs of our developing country partners in alignment with the following three focus areas: Continue reading


Thomas McCormack, Country Representativ, MEDA

MACIG Connect Series

MEDA is a Canadian not for profit organization that has taken up the task of developing Ethiopia’s gemstone industry.

MEDA is a not for profit organization that is based in Canada, with Mennonite roots that works on business solutions to poverty through a number of different strategies. What is your current activity in Ethiopia?

We made a proposal to the Canadian government, that has funded us for a six year activity, to take a look at three different value chains and what we can do to support business growth and employment opportunities in vegetables, rice, and gemstones. We take a look at the entire value chain with an eye towards figuring out which dynamics are missing and what is not working and why is it not working. We look to see if there are meaningful things we can improve so businesses can work better, especially micro, small and medium size enterprises.

How did MEDA come to identify gemstones as an important value chain to support in Ethiopia? Continue reading

Farhad Abasov, President and CEO, Director, Allana Potash

Private and non-government partnerships nurturing Ethiopian mining industry.

allana-potash-BLOGHaving recently achieved several key milestones including the strategic alliance with Israel Chemicals Ltd (ICL) for your flagship Danakhil Potash Project in Ethiopia, can you provide us with a brief overview of your current operations?

Farhad Abasov (FA): Allana Potash is focused on identifying and developing potash projects. Our flagship project in the Danakhil depression is in the northeastern part of Ethiopia and we started with this project about four years ago. The Danakhil Potash Project is one of the most advanced greenfield potash projects in the world. It has a very large resource base and is one of the world’s lowest cost projects, partly due to a shallow potash deposit and the hot climate from this part of Ethiopia. Continue reading