Dr. Getachew Betru, is the former CEO of the Ethiopian Railway Corporation, he will speak on his experience in building one of Sub-Saharan Africa’s most modern railway systems. His talk will delve into the rationale and process of this mega-project from planning of a transport corridor, the industrialization process of the hinterland, attracting foreign funding, to the integration of the various regions of Ethiopia’s federal system. In the context of a complex institutional and legal framework, what does the planning and implementation process of major infrastructure projects look like? On what basis and under which constraints were choices regarding technology, knowledge transfer and sustainability made? Who are the stakeholders and how are these managed? What value does a railway of this magnitude add to the building of peace, security and prosperity in the region? Dr. Getachew Betru’s presentation aims to provide an overview into the dynamics of his work as the former head of the Ethiopian Railway Corporation.
From its inception in 2007 until 2017, Dr. Betru was CEO of the Ethiopian Railway Corporation. He was appointed by FDRE Ministry of Transport and Communication and responsible for the conceptualization and implementation of the first light-railway in Sub-Saharan Africa, the Addis Ababa Light Rail Transit (AA-LRT), as well as the planning of the 5000km of mainline railway program in Ethiopia, including the high-profile Addis Ababa-Djibouti railway project. From 2001 to 2007, he was a member of the Management Board of the Ethiopian Electricity and Power Corporation (EEPCO). Prior to that he was involved in numerous infrastructure projects involving the Road Sector development program and energy projects across the country. He is a member of the Chartered Institute of Quality Assurance London and also a member of the American Railway Engineering and Maintenance Association (AREMA). Dr. Betru holds a PHD in Civil Engineering and an MSc in Soil Mechanics from H-W University in Edinburgh, a MSc in Construction Management from Kingston University, UK and a BSc Hons in Civil Engineering from Leeds University.