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Ethiopia: New Law to Impose Mandatory Health Insurance

(Feb. 12, 2009) It was reported on February 2, 2009, that health officials of Ethiopia's Federal Government have proposed a new bill that seeks to make health insurance mandatory for anyone with a job. If passed into law, this bill will be the first to compel employers, both in the public and private sector, to make contributions towards their employees' health insurance coverage. The bill also requires employees to meet half of the cost for that insurance.

This bill will only target individuals with formal employment. The number of people in the country with formal employment in either the public or the private sector is estimated at one million, out of a total population of about 82.5 million. (Hilina Alemu, Ethiopia: Gov't to Make Universal Insurance Compulsory, ADDIS FORTUNE, Feb. 2, 2009, available at; Central Intelligence Agency, Ethiopia, WORLD FACTBOOK, (last visited Feb. 3, 2009).)