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date: 20 October 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Coffee is of great strategic significance in Ethiopia given its potential role in wider structural transformation and the enormous scope for market gains from increased output and higher productivity. But Ethiopia has not succeeded in promoting the improvements in productivity and quality that are possible. This chapter outlines the main failures of recent coffee policy on which most observers agree. It goes on to summarize prevalent diagnoses of the policy and political economy problems in the sector. It argues that there are important shortcomings in the most common policy prescriptions to remedy the problems in coffee production and trade. Above all, a large number of external and internal reports have failed to provide a foundation for priorities in policymaking for coffee; instead they provide long lists of things to do. We offer a small number of high priorities if the long-lasting under performance of the coffee sector is to be overcome.

Keywords: Ethiopia, coffee, structural change, development policy, smallholders, replanting, balance of payments

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