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Catalysts and barriers to cut flower export: A case study of Ethiopian floriculture industry

Rakesh Belwal (Department of Management, Addis Ababa University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia)
Meseret Chala (Addis Ababa University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia)

International Journal of Emerging Markets

ISSN: 1746-8809

Article publication date: 11 April 2008




This paper aims to conduct a case study on the recent rise of floriculture industry in Ethiopia which has taken aback the stakeholders in the global flower industry. Further to understand this success, an attempt has been made to conduct an environmental appraisal of the floriculture industry in Ethiopia amid explicit promotional efforts of the incumbent government towards boosting floriculture exports. Particularly, the study intends to reveal the catalysts and barriers prevalent in the industry that concerns the growth.


The first stage of research involves a general assessment of global and Ethiopian floriculture industry using desk research. The second stage includes analysis of primary data secured through interview of managers at eight functional floriculture farms located around Addis Ababa. The study utilizes qualitative analysis of data acquired using judgmental‐cum‐convenience sampling and semi‐structured interviews with concerned officials.


The success of Ethiopia in the cut flower exports from Africa has been remarkable. Ethiopia enjoys certain advantages that create ample opportunities for being one among the principal producers and exporters of flower in the world. As a whole, the finding reveals that foreign investments, government support and the formation of the Horticulture Producers and Exporters Association are the major catalysts in the sector. However, the opportunities are not without threats. Infrastructural bottlenecks appended by shortage of agricultural inputs, narrow product range, and lack of adherence to international codes of practices are major among the perceived barriers. As a whole, there is a growing trend in the development of the floricultural industry in Ethiopia. With the attention given by the government to this sector coupled with the advantages that Ethiopia has, the country has been able to attract both domestic and foreign investors. Ethiopia's performance in floriculture acts as an eye opener for other African countries.


The study is of benefit to the floriculture industry as well as the investors and policy makers intending to support establishing floriculture industries in countries such as Ethiopia.



Belwal, R. and Chala, M. (2008), "Catalysts and barriers to cut flower export: A case study of Ethiopian floriculture industry", International Journal of Emerging Markets, Vol. 3 No. 2, pp. 216-235.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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