Public Private Infrastructure Advisory Facility Study of urban public transport conditions in




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Public Private Infrastructure Advisory Facility

Study of urban public transport conditions in

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia



IBIS Transport Consultants Ltd

March 2005

Public Private Infrastructure Advisory Facility 1

Study of urban public transport conditions in 1

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia 1

0Introduction 1

0.1Context of the report 1

0.2Currency of reporting 1

0.3Ethiopian calendar 1

1Political context 2

1.1Institutional structure including allocation of powers between jurisdictions 2

1.2Central government policy position on private supply in public transport 2

1.3Existence of a private sector in other public utility sectors 3

1.4Local government policy stance and willingness to reform 3

2Economic conditions 4

2.1National GDP per capita 4

2.2Percentage of income spent on public transport 4

2.3Current transport fares and costs, in current dollar equivalents 4

2.4Population of Addis Ababa 5

3Current public transport patronage 6

3.1Passenger numbers by category 6

3.2Ticket types 7

3.3Passenger load factors 7

4Structure and organisation of urban public transport 9

4.1Organisational structure 9

4.2Legal basis for organisation and jurisdiction 9

4.3Vehicle ownership and management 10

4.4Vehicle purchase, finance and insurance 10

4.5Legislative instruments 11

4.6Staffing and skills analysis 11

4.7Facilities and equipment 12

4.8Financial environment 13

4.9Role of the informal sector 14

5Service supply characteristics 16

5.1Operational characteristics – bus services 16

5.2Operational characteristics – minibus services 18

5.3Current bus routing and scheduling plan 21

5.4Income and expenditure statements 22

6Vehicle related data 25

6.1Vehicle ownership 25

6.2Constraints on supply of sector inputs 25

6.3Financial arrangements for fleet procurement 26

6.4Fleet inventory 26

6.5Fleet maintenance 27

6.6Vehicle operating costs 28

7Existing regulatory arrangements and institutions 29

7.1Review of market conditions 29

7.2Fare and fare change mechanisms 30

7.3Effects of unions and union regulations 31

7.4Taxation and other incentives / constraints 31

8Perceived problems 33

8.1Inadequate service quantity 33

8.2Low levels of safety 34

8.3Poor service quality 34

8.4Low level of affordability 36

8.5Low operating speeds 36

8.6Poor service accessibility 37

8.7Inappropriate vehicle type and size 38

8.8Poor vehicle condition 39

8.9Inefficient operating procedures 41

8.10Inefficient network design 42

9Attributed causes 44

9.1Poor operating standards and inadequate enforcement 44

9.2Lack of profitability and investment 45

9.3Low skills base 45

9.4Violent or illegal behaviour in the operating industry, and administrative corruption 46

9.5Lack of economic regulation, network planning, and supporting institutions 46

9.6Inappropriate ownership structures or company size 47

9.7Inadequate transport infrastructure 48

9.8Lack of empowerment of transport users 48

10Reform programme 49

10.1Nature of planned reforms 49

10.2Drivers of the proposed reforms 49

10.3Obstacles to reform 50

10.4Linkage to other development initiatives 50

Appendix 1 51

Anbessa Route Analysis – January 2005 51

Appendix 2 56

Anbessa Financial Statements – Management Accounts 56

  1. Introduction

  1. Context of the report


This report on the current situation with regard to urban passenger transport within Addis Ababa has been prepared as a reference database to assist with the construction of a ‘toolkit’ on bus transport reform to be financed by PPIAF under the direction of the World Bank. This toolkit is intended to serve as a manual for governments when they recommend and implement processes to reform and re-organise the provision of urban transport services.

The report seeks to describe the current arrangements for the provision of public transport in Addis Ababa, and analyse the deficiencies observed in the supply of these. It is based on two recent studies (one completed in the past year, and the second ongoing), together with further interviews of key stakeholders undertaken in the light of these.

The first of these studies titled ‘Improving urban transport through private participation in Addis Ababa’ was undertaken by LEA International of Canada and completed in February 2005. This study focused on an evaluation of the policy, regulatory and institutional options for improving bus services in Addis Ababa. A new regulatory regime for the public transport sector is proposed, together with measures to revitalise the incumbent publicly owned large bus operator.

The second study covers urban transport planning and traffic management for Addis Ababa, and is being undertaken by Consulting Engineering Services of India. Their initial Findings Report is due later in March 2005, but some preliminary material has been made available for this report. The study contains a detailed analysis of road traffic in the city, as well as of both the public and private sector providers of urban transport services.


  1. Currency of reporting


All monetary figures used in this report are expressed in Ethiopian Birr. At the time of writing in March 2005, the rate of exchange of the Birr to the US Dollar was 8.657 to 1. This rate reflected an effective Dollar devaluation of less than 5% over the past year, enabling direct comparisons between each of the two studies referenced above.
  1. Ethiopian calendar


The Ethiopian calendar varies from standard international practice in a number of ways. The Ethiopian year starts on 11 September in the Gregorian calendar, and the current year is 1997. There are 11 months each of 30 days, followed by one month of 35 or 36 days depending on whether there is a Leap Year in the Gregorian calendar. To complicate matters further, the fiscal year in Ethiopia starts on 8 July in the Gregorian calendar. However the fiscal year is given the number of the calendar year that it largely overlays. Thus the current year running from 8 July 2004 to 7 July 2005 is referred to as Budget Year 1997 EC.

Where appropriate, Ethiopian dating has been converted to the Gregorian calendar for the purpose of this report. Also, Ethiopian months have been converted to their nearest Gregorian equivalent in the text.


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