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Abiy’s “Homegrown Economic Reform Plan” is Proving Harder to Crystalize

The results can be seen in the number of half-finished buildings across Addis. Property is seen as a hedge against inflation and the official devaluation of the birr that developers assume will be part of any IMF agreement. But they are struggling to get dollars to import the materials needed to finish their buildings. Abiy’s allies argue that they will succeed in pushing reform despite the macroeconomic problems and what they see as opposition from vested interests. In November the government reached a deal to reschedule payments due to official creditors including China. It hopes to cut a similar one with commercial creditors over a $1bn loan due in December. Officials hope that dollars from the IMF will give them the space to continue reforms.