East Africa’s Rising Economy: Ethiopia to Launch its First-Ever Satellite in December

President Sahle Work Zewde

Ethiopia is one of the fastest growing economy of East Africa not only in agriculture but also in Space Technology. Late last year Ethiopia announced that it would launch its first ever earth observation satellite with the help of China, with China footing majority of the bill. The Ethiopian President Sahle-Work Zewde on Monday disclosed that Ethiopia’s first-ever satellite will be launched into space in December this year from China.

While addressing the new parliamentary session of the Ethiopian House of People’s Representatives (HoPR) and the House of Federation (HoF), President Zwede said “The first Ethiopian satellite will be launched in December this year from a center in China. The satellite will provide all the necessary data on changes in climate and weather-related phenomena that would be utilized for the country’s key targets in agriculture, forestry as well as natural resources protection initiatives”

The 70Kg Multi-Spectral Remote Sensing Satellite ETRSS-1 roughly costing $8 million with $6 million bore by China is being co-developed by Ethiopians Space Science and Technology Institute. The command and control center in Ethiopia at the Entoto space observatory facility, East Africa’s only space observatory facility, located on the outskirts of the capital Addis Ababa. ETRSS-1 will be East Africa’s first satellite to go into orbit and is designed to monitor weather patterns for early drought detection and better agricultural planning.


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