Daily Ethiopian news update on October 14, 2022. Ministry prohibits certain imported goods
The Ministry of Finance has ordered the National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE) to stop the approval of foreign currency for 38 selected import items for an indefinite period. A circular addressed to NBE today stated Letter of Credit (LC) should not be open for the items. Automobiles, motorcycles, and three-wheelers are among the items prohibited from importation. Electric vehicles are exempted.
The ministry prohibits items like processed foods, bottled water, and perfumes to prioritize foreign currency for medicine and necessities. The Ministry of Finance-Ethiopia (MoF) has announced that 38 types of products will not receive a bank trust document. It is said that the products have been researched and announced by the Customs Commission based on the direction set by the National Macro Economic Committee.
The embargo was imposed on the products as they were not found to be priority items and to obtain sufficient foreign exchange for the priority import items. The National Bank of Ethiopia also stated that the products are the reason for foreign currency smuggling. According to the Deputy Governor and Chief Economist of the NBE, Fekadu Digafe, the suspension will last for an indefinite period. Banned items include drinks, such as whiskey or beer and other beverages, chewing gum, chocolate, water, cigarettes, artificial decorations, and similar materials are indicated. According to NBE, the ban also applies to cars that are imported by private LCs.