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  • Heineken Breweries S.C. can no longer use beer brand, Waliya

    Heineken Breweries S.C. can no longer use its well promoted beer brand, Waliya, following the verdict of the Lideta Federal High Court on October 11, 2015 which shifted the right to use of the trademark Waliya, to another ongoing brewery project run by Kangaroo Plastic Plc.

    Waliya was registered in the Ethiopian Intellectual Property Office (EIPO) as a trademark owned by Kangaroo Plastic for its ongoing brewery project in Oromia Regional State in Modjo, Kebele 02 before Heineken Breweries.

    Later, on February 25, 2014, Heineken Breweries requested EIPO to register the same trademark for one of its beers, which was not acceptable by the office due to the former registration of the same brand by Kangaroo. In its rejection to register the trademark and name, EIPO instructed Heineken to modify or come up with another name.

    The registered name for both parties in EIPO was ‘Ibex’ which was later translated into Amharic by Heineken. The ibex is a wild mountain goat with long, curved horns.

    Kangaroo Plastic was the major local distributor of the Heineken beer and later in 2010, the two had begun working to form a partnership for a new brewery. The partnership agreement has since terminated, ending Kangaroo’s role as a distributor as well as prospective partner, according to Ephreme Yirga, one of the co-owners of Kangaroo Plastic declining further explanation.

    When Heineken sought to renew the second application, it had neither modified the name Walia, nor had it come up with a new name. It rather, argued convincingly, that Kangaroo had to lose the Walia name as it had not used it for three years, the period of limitation in the intellectual property law to cancel a formerly registered trade name and mark.

    Kangaroo took its case to the EIPO’s appeal hearing Tribunal through its lawyer Mekonnen Semu, who mentioned as Force majeure, a fire accident at Kangaroo Plastic’s plant, which had interrupted the machinery procurement process for the brewery project. The company was forced to suspend the brewery project and reinstate the foam factory’s operation, he argued. It accused Heineken of lying to the EIPO that Kangaroo’s brewery project was dropped.

    That argument was rejected by the EIPO.

    “The two companies have different legal personalities with different rights and obligations. The fire accident occurred in Kangaroo Plastic and this should not be used as a Force majeure ground for the brewery project not utilising the trademark,” the Tribunal reasoned.

    Kangaroo took its case to the High Court, arguing that the Force majeure defense was valid, as the brewery was to be made using the revenue from the foam factory.

    Heineken’s lawyer Mehari Redie had argued that the case was not within the jurisdiction of the court but of an administrative tribunal. The Force majeure argument of Kangaroo should have a direct relationship with the brewery project; damage in another factory could not be a defense. He added that the Ethiopian Insurance Corporation (EIC) had paid compensation for the fire damage.

    The High Court rejected all arguments of Heineken over jurisdiction and Force majeure, accepting that the fire at the factory had hindered the financing of the project. Trademark Registration & Protection Proclamation Number 501/2006 article 35(2) does not give interpretation of what occurrences constitute Force majeure, the court’s presiding judge, Getachew Yirga, remarked and concluded that the fire accident served as a Force majeure to the discontinuation of the project.

    The insurance coverage given to the factory was insufficient to complete the brewery project and Heineken did not come up with other arguments related to the suspension of the project. Hence the court reversed the EIPO tribunal’s decision ordering the office to cancel its registration of Walia for Heineken and reinstate Kangaroo.

    The outcome of the case was in general good, but the High Court’s saying the companies are owned by one person is not proper. What it should have said was that the project has no separate legal personality, Kangaroo’s second lawyer Tafess Yirga said.

    I was wondering how the EIPO office had arrived at the conclusion that Kangaroo Plastic and the brewery project had two separate legal personalities while the Memorandum and Articles of Association of the companies show otherwise. The brewery project has no separate legal personality. It is subsidiary of Kangarro Plastic, Ephreme opined.

    “In the Ethiopian legal framework there is no explicit law that governs corporate relationships. There is no concept of sister company unless de facto. But if the concept has to be applied de facto sister company, the term may be applied to subsidiaries of a parent company. This relationship has an impact of merging legal rights and responsibilities such that debts of one may be paid by the other. However, in the absence of such explicit relationships in the law, it is wrong that the tribunal decided that the two companies have separate legal personalities and the accident in one company could not be an excuse for the other. In addition to the tribunal, the High Court also committed misinterpretation in saying the two companies are owned by one person and damage incurred by one has a direct relationship with the other,” Liqu Dametew (PhD), legal expert in Competition Law & Corporate Governance commented.

    What constitutes Force majeure is even controversial and a fire accident is not Force majeure but rather a foreseeable incident, Liqu extrapolated.

    Another legal expert with specialisation in trademarks emphasised the gap in the law in determining the acts constituting Force majeure. But he noted that cancellation of trademark registration should consider the genuine intention of the party to use the trademark. Given the fire accident’s indirect impact on the beer project, he supported the High Court’s decision and considered the accident as a legitimate reason.

    “We are going to appeal to the Supreme Court and I have no further comment on the judgment,” Mehari Redie said.

    Source : addisfortune

     

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  • Workers’ travel ban not lifted: Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs (MoLSA)

    The travel ban imposed on workers travelling abroad to look for work is not lifted, the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs (MoLSA) said. The Ministry, in a statement it sent advised the public not to be deceived by illegal brokerage. Some individual are misleading the public, pretending that the ban was lifted, the statement noted. The government will make it clear to the people when the ban is lifted, it said. Ethiopia temporarily banned its citizens from travelling abroad to ensure the well-being of its citizens. The government has been taking various measures, including setting up a national council, to prevent human trafficking. It has recently begun crackdown on trafficking gangs by arresting 200 involved in the practice. Despite ongoing efforts, many Ethiopians try to go abroad, travelling via Yemen by sea. The Ministry finally called upon the public to do their part in the ongoing efforts to prevent trafficking and bring traffickers to justice. 

    source : fana

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  • New Outpatient Department and Delivery Facility at Hiwot Fana Specialized University Hospital inaugurated

    A new outpatient department and delivery facility at Hiwot Fana Specialized University Hospital, built with funding from the U.S government and offering comprehensive integrated HIV clinical and maternity services, opened in Harar today.

    Holly Wong, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Global Affairs at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; Peter H. Vrooman, Charge d’Affaires, A.I., U.S. Embassy; Professor Chemeda Fininsa, Acting President of Haramaya University; Murad Abdulhadi, President of Harari Regional State; and Dr. Kebede Worku, State Minster of Health, participated in the inauguration of the hospital.

    During the ribbon cutting ceremony, Ms. Wong said, “We are here today to inaugurate this new Outpatient Department and Delivery facility, which will provide critical health services to the people of Harar. The opening of this facility represents the results of our successful collaboration and our combined efforts to improve the health of the people of Harar and of Ethiopia.”

    With funding from the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and working in partnership with Haramaya University and the Harari Regional Health Bureau, the U.S. Government provided $ 3.6 million (over ETB. 73 million) for the construction of this new facility.

    According to a statement the US Embassy sent to FBC today, the facility complies with U.S. construction standards and is fully accessible.

    The new facility will provide complete and coordinated care to enhance the patient-centered experience and to increase capacity to accommodate ever increasing patients on anti-retroviral therapy (ART).

    The hospital has a quality waiting area, ultrasound facilities, nurse stations, examination rooms, duty rooms, maternity rooms, a nursery, an operation room, a labor/delivery room with bathrooms/showers, a program on the Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission, a family planning unit, and adult and pediatric Antiretroviral Therapy.

    The new outpatient and delivery facility will be an additional asset for Haramaya University as a teaching venue for physicians and other health worker training programs.  

    Hiwot Fana Specialized University Hospital serves as a referral hospital for the entire eastern part of the Ethiopia, including the Eastern Oromia region, Dire Dawa city, the Somali region, and the Harari regional state. Currently, the facility is treating more than 2,097 HIV positive patients.

    It is a teaching hospital for Haramaya University’s College of Health and Medical Sciences. The history of America’s relationship with Haramaya University dates back to the early 1950s when the United States helped establish the original Agricultural College at Haramaya.

    sours: fanabc

     

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  • Ato Demeke Mekonne elected Deputy Prime Minister of Ethiopia

    Demeke Mekonne has been elected Deputy Prime Minister and Social Cluster Coordinator.

    The House of People’s Representatives (HPR), in its regular session today, approved Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn’s nomination of Demeke Mekonnen for Deputy Premiership position.

    Demeke served in various positions in Amhara Regional State. He served as Minister of Education since 2001EC.

    He is Deputy Prime Minister of Ethiopia as well as Executive Committee member of both the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) and the Amhara National Democratic Movement (ANDM) since 2005.

    He earned his first degree in Biology and second degree in Political Science.

    He is a trusted, responsible and able political leader, Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn said while presenting his reason for nominating him for the Deputy Premiership position.

    Similarly, the House approved the appointment of Dr. Debretsion Gebremichael as Deputy Prime Minister for Finance and Economic Cluster and Minister of Communication and Information Technology.

    Dr. Debretsion participated in the armed struggle against the dictatorial Derg regime and served in various positions in Tigray Regional State.

    He served as Minister of Communication and Information Technology since 2003 EC. He is Deputy Prime Minister for Finance and Economic Cluster and Minister of Communication and Information Technology since 2005 EC.

    He earned his doctorate degree in Information Technology.

    Aster Mamo was also appointed Deputy Prime Minister for Good Governance and Reform Cluster and Minister of Public Service and Human Resource Development.

    She served as Minister of Youth and Sport from 1998 to 2002 EC as well as in various positions in Oromia Regional State.

    Aster earned her first degree in language and literature and second degree in Management.

    source : fanabc

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  • UAE Bans Meat Imports from Ethiopia

    The United Arab Emirates (UAE) had put an indefinite ban on all meat imports from Ethiopia starting from October 1, 2015, according to Addis Fortune.

    The ban was due to a rushed order of meat for the EId ul-Adha holiday.

    36 tons of sheep meat was ordered by a charity organization in UAE from seven meat processing companies, namely ELFORA Agro-Industries Plc, Luna Export Slaughter House Plc, Modjo Modern Export Abattoir Plc, Halal Food Industries Plc, HELIMEX (Hashim Ethiopian Livestock Meat Exporter), Allana Group and Abyssinia Export Abattoirs. Usually the normal sheep meat process takes 10 days, but the order came to supply in two days, General Manager of Halal Daniel Zenebe told Fortune.

    Haileselassie Weres, Director of Meat and Dairy Industry Development Institute, said to find a solution to the matter Meat Inspection Directorate in the Ministry of Agriculture and Meat Producers and Exporters Association is looking forward to communicate with the relevant regulatory bodies in UAE.

    UAE is Ethiopia’s largest meat export destination. The meet market accounts for 58.8 million dollars of the 93.2 million dollars earned in the past budget year. Saudi Arabia comes next accounting for 32.4 percent share, export data from Ministry of Trade shows.

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  • Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn Forms New Administration

    Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn today formed his new administration after parliament approved his nomination after parliament approved his nomination for the cabinet.
    The new government will have 25 ministries and four director generals with ministerial ranks.
    Hailemariam’s incoming administration largely unchanged, but if features some major changes in some positions, the most notable being Getachew Reda becoming director general of government communication affairs with a ministerial portfolio.
    The new administration also includes the introduction of new ministries into the government, such as ministries of state enterprises, livestock and fisheries.
    The full list of Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn’s cabinet is as follows:
    1. Demeke Mekonnen, deputy prime minister in charge of social cluster;
    2. Debretsion G. Michael (PhD), minister of Communications Technology in charge of economic cluster;
    3. Aster Mamo, minister of public service in charge of human development cluster;
    4. Sirag Fergessa, minister of National Defense;
    5. Tewodros Adhanom, minister of Foreign Affairs;
    6. Kassa T. Brehan, minister of Federal & Pastoralist Development Affairs;
    7. Getachew Ambaye, minister of Justice;
    8. Abdulaziz Mohammed, minister of Finance & Economic Cooperation;
    9. Tefera Derebew, minister of Agriculture and Natural Resources;
    10. Shiferaw Shigute, minister of Education;
    11. Abiy Ahmed; minister of Science & Technology;
    12. Ambachew Mekonnen (PhD), minister of Construction;
    13. Ahmed Abetew, minister of Industry;
    14. Worqneh Gebeyehu, minister of Transport;
    15. Damitu Hambissa, minister of State Enterprises;
    16. Yacob Yalla, minister of Trade;
    17. Tollosa Shagi, minister of Mines, Petroleum & Natural Gas;
    18. Sileshi Getahun, minister of Livestock & Fisheries;
    19. Kesetebrehan Admasu (PhD), minister of Health;
    20. Abdulfetah Abdulahi, minister of Labour & Social Affairs;
    21. Mekuria Haile, minister of Housing & Urban Development;
    22. Motuma Bedassa, minister of Water, Irrigation & Electricity;
    23. Aisha Moussa, minister of Culture & Tourism;
    24. Shiferaw T. Mariam (MD), minister of Environment, Forest & Climate Change;
    25. Zenebu Taddese, minister of Children & Women;
    26. Redwan Hussien, minister of Youth & Sports;
    Director Generals under the rank of ministers
    1. Beker Shalle, director general of Ethiopian Revenues & Customs Authority;
    2. Getachew Reda, director general of Government Communications Affairs Office;
    3. Yinager Dessie (PhD), commissioner of National Planning Commission;
    4. Asmelash W. Sellasie, chief Government Whip.

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  • Hailemariam Re-elected as Prime Minister of Ethiopia

    The House of People's Representatives unanimously endorsed the appointment of Hailemariam Dessalegn as Prime Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia in its 5th tenure opening session here yesterday.

    Hailemariam, who has been leading the country after succeeding the late Prime Minister Meles Zenawi, took the oath of office officiated by Federal Supreme Court President Tegene Getaneh.

    Hailemariam was nominated to the premiership by the ruling Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) which won 501 seats in the 5th general election. In its nomination the Front said that the Prime Minister has been leading the country effectively and is dedicated and competent to sustain the ongoing economic growth.

    The House also appointed Abadula Gemeda as Speaker for the second time while picking Shitaye Minale as Deputy Speaker for the 3rd time. The speakers were also sworn in by Federal Supreme Court President Tegene Getaneh.

    Meanwhile, addressing the Joint Session of the Houses of People's Representatives and the Federation, FDRE President Dr. Mulatu Teshome said that the Second Growth and Transformation Plan (GTP II) will speed up the nation's endeavours to become a middle income economy.

    Dr. Mulatu also called upon the government and the public to exert maximum effort to curb malpractices and rent-seeking mentality. As the country continues to achieve remarkable economic growth in the past years, problem of good governance remains to pose a threat which the nation has to deal with.

    The President urged the House to give due attention to democratizing the country despite the growing public participation over the last couple of decades.

    The President also indicated that activities will be carried out to promote the manufacturing and industry sectors to increase their contribution in the GDP, adding that due attention will also be given to the agriculture and service sectors.

    He also noted that the government will focus on attaining holistic development and bringing down inflation rate to one digit. The imbalance between import and export has been a concern for the country and the government will be giving due attention to bridge the gap thereby improving hard currency earning.

    Earlier in the day, the House of Federation in its opening session chaired by President Dr. Mulatu appointed Yalew Abate and Mohamed Reshid as Speaker and Deputy Speaker of the House respectively. Former Speaker Kassa Teklebirhan handed over power to the newly appointed Speaker.

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  • Marriott Inaugurates Africa's First Executive Apartments in Addis Ababa

    Marriott International, in partnership with Sunshine Business Plc today inaugurated Africa’s first Marriott Executive Apartments in Addis Abeba, Ethiopia.

    The Marriott Executive Apartments Addis Abeba will appeal to both business and family travelers with 108 fully serviced Apartments offering space, ambience and the privacy of residential living enabling a comfortable stay away from home.

    “This is the latest in a series of important landmark hotel signings and openings we have made in Africa.” said Alex Kyriakides, president and managing director of Marriott International for Middle East and Africa.

    Selamawit Samuel, Sunshine Business Owner & Executive Vice President said that they are very excited to be partnering with Marriott International to successfully open the properties in Africa.

    Solomon Taddesse, CEO of Ethiopian Tourism Organization said the government has prioritized the tourism sector and encourages global brands to invest in and also partner with Ethiopian firms.

    President Mulatu Teshome cut the ribbon, officially inaugurating Marriott Executive Apartments Addis Abeba.

    The Marriott Executive Apartments Addis Abeba will provide residents with a choice of one and two-bedroom elegantly furnished serviced Apartments, or the Penthouse Presidential Suite, each with a fully-equipped kitchen, free Wi-Fi, satellite TV, and includes services such as housekeeping, grocery shopping and room service.

    For business travelers, the property provides multi function meeting rooms and over 160 square meters of event space.

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  • Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn leaves for New York

    Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn has left for New York to attend the United Nations summit for the adoption of the post-2015 development agenda.

    The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are set for adoption by the 193 UN member states during the three-day high-level meeting of the General Assembly.

    More than 150 world leaders, including President Barack Obama are expected to attend the summit, which precedes the annual gathering of world leaders at the UN beginning September 28.

    The SDGs consist of 17 broad goals and 169 specific targets. They replace the United Nations' expiring Millennium Development Goals adopted in 2000.

    In addition to attending the summit, Hailemariam is expected to hold bilateral talks with different countries and international organizations

    source - ENA

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