ADDIS ABEBA – Top Ethiopian economist Neway Gebreab has passed away on Monday, February 24, 2020.
Neway was a chief economic advisor to leaders of Ethiopia during the time it has shown prolonged economic development.
His colleagues said he served the nation “with dedication” in his last jobs in charge, among others, as Chair of the Board of Director of the National Bank of Ethiopia and member of the Macroeconomic Council for nearly 25 years until his retirement.
He has also been executive director of the Ethiopian Development Research Institute or EDRI, a semi-autonomous research think-tank, since 2000.
“So sad to hear the passing of Ato Neway Gebreab,” said Eyob Tekalign, Ethiopia’s state minister of Finance
He called him “a gentleman who gave his country all he could”. Neway “Served his country with dignity and passion. A great person gone. May he Rest In Peace!,” he added.
The former head of Ethiopian Commodity Exchange (ECX), Eleni Gebremedhin, described him as “economic guardian who oversaw Ethiopia rise to among the fastest growing economies in the world”.
She gave credit to Neway for her return to Ethiopia from the U.S. in order to realize “the crazy improbable dream of a modern tech-driven commodity exchange”.
“I would not be in Ethiopia but for him, nor would there be a commodity exchange, just as he had hoped,” she said. “Today, my heart is heavy to learn of the loss of this quiet Ethiopian hero, who hated the limelight in spite of all he did”.
During the 1960s and early 1970s Neway worked at the Development Bank of Ethiopia and the Planning Commission.
He then worked as a Consultant in the United Kingdom and served as a staff member or consultant for various United Nations organizations.
He returned to Ethiopia in December 1991. Neway earned his undergraduate degree in economics from Addis Ababa University, and his B.Litt. degree in economics from Oxford University.