By Dawit Taye |

The Ethiopia Commodity Exchange (ECX), the first organized exchange in Ethiopia, is set to split into two giving rise to another state-owned enterprise called the Ethiopian Agricultural Commodities Warehousing Service Enterprises (EACWSE)

which will be in business of providing an innovative warehousing services to ECX and other customers in the market.

The company will be the latest to be incorporated as SoE under the supervision of the Privatization Public Enterprises Supervisory Agency (PPESA) which is established with an authorized capital of one billion birr and paid up capital of 250 million birr.

Ermias Eshetu, CEO of ECX, told journalists at a press conference on Thursday that the international experience dictates that the two services be separated from one another to facilitate the activities of the trading institutions. And from the context of the local market, the warehousing service was also one of the components of the commodity trading which drew frequent criticism from customers.

Apart from offering storage services, the warehouse segment was also responsible for assigning quality grading for the commodities which are traded at the ECX floor. This grading service of ECX has long been criticized for severe malpractice and possible rent-seeking practices. Buyers collecting lower grade commodities is one area which is commonly criticized by customers.

According to the statement that was issued by ECX, the new enterprise will take away some 600 out of the total 750 employees who worked under the Exchange. This is justified since the warehousing service is a segment that operates 65 facilities across the country and ECX will be left with only 150 employees to operate the commodity’s trading activities. Going forward, Ermias said, EACWSE will not restricted to serving ECX but offer competent warehouse services for customers. However, some customers express their worry that the new arrangement might cause a hiccup on the activities of ECX, which Ermias defends saying adequate preparation has been made.

Source: The Reporter
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