Ethiopia is the country where coffee originated. It is the largest and most populous country in the Horn of Africa. Around 100 languages are spoken among the more than 120 million inhabitants. The capital Addis Ababa is one of the major cities of the African continent and the seat of the headquarters of the African Union. The majority of the population lives in rural areas. 

© Caritas Switzerland

The main source of income in the rural areas is agriculture. However, the climate has a huge impact on cultivation methods used and on yields. For this reason, the promotion of sustainable agriculture and the creation of new sources of income are among Caritas Switzerland’s goals in Ethiopia. Caritas Switzerland started its commitment in the country in 1974. The projects continue to include components of emergency relief and peace promotion. 

Overview in figures 

  • Sources: Human Development Report, UNESCO, UNFPA (as of 2022)
  • Total population: 120,8 million 
  • Poverty Index (proportion of people affected by poverty): 72,7% 
  • Prosperity indicator (total 191 countries): rank 175 
  • Gross National Income per capita: USD 2’361 
  • Life expectancy at birth: 65 years 
  • Child mortality: 4% 
  • Literacy rate (age 15 and over): 52% 
  • CO2 emissions per capita: 0,1 tons 

Caritas projects in the country 

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Caritas Switzerland on site

Header image: Die Förderung resilienter Landwirtschaft ist Teil der Caritas-Projekte in Äthiopien. © Maheder Haileselassie Tadese