[Overview] Addis Ababa is the capital and largest city of Ethiopia and also the country's political, economic, cultural and tourism center. It is located in the central part of Ethiopia and close to the equator. Sitting at the foot of Mount Entoto at an elevation of 2,355 meters, Addis Ababa is the highest city in Africa. It covers an area of 527 square kilometers and has a population size of about 4 million.
[Politics] Addis Ababa is a chartered city that has the status of both a city and a state. The 138 members of the city council are elected every five years. The city government consists of the mayor, directors of various bureaus and officials appointed by the mayor. The incumbent acting mayor Takele Uma came into office in July 2018.
[Economy] As the economic center of Ethiopia, Addis Ababa is home to over half of the businesses nationwide. It is also the country's financial, insurance, telecommunication and infrastructure center. The industrial zone in the southern suburb contains a large number of enterprises engaged in building materials, textile, foodstuff and leather processing, while the famous Merkato in the city is Africa's largest outdoor fair. There are also distribution centers of coffee, grain, tobacco and other produce in the city.
[Culture and Education] As the national educational and cultural center, Addis Ababa boasts a large array of cultural facilities, memorial buildings and places of interests, such as the Addis Ababa University, National Museum of Ethiopia, Ethiopian Development Research Institute, Ethnological Museum of Ethiopia, Holy Trinity Cathedral and Church of St. George. Tourist attractions in the near suburbs include Mount Entoto, a lava lake and Lower Valley of the Awash. [Relations with Beijing] Beijing and Addis Ababa signed the Memorandum of Understanding in Addis Ababa in November 2003, and they officially became sister cities on April 17, 2006. The two cities have maintained sound official ties in recent years, and worked closely together in such areas as investment and trade, urban management, public facilities and culture.
Investment and Trade: In November 2003, municipal leaders of Beijing led a delegation of government officials and entrepreneurs to visit Addis Ababa at the latter's invitation, during which the entrepreneurs held in-depth discussions with the local chamber of commerce.
Urban Management and Public Facilities: In August 2010, Deputy Director of Addis Ababa's Design and Construction Management Bureau led a delegation to visit Beijing. They held meetings with the Beijing municipal authorities including the Commission of City Planning and Bureau of Land and Resources (currently combined into the Municipal Commission of Planning and Natural Resources), Bureau of Environmental Protection, Water Authority, Bureau of Finance and Commission of Housing and Urban-Rural Development. The delegation was given a detailed account of Beijing's policies and measures regarding urban planning and construction, utilization and development of land and resources, environmental protection, river bank protection and improvement, solid waste disposal, construction and maintenance of transportation infrastructure, and fiscal and tax systems.
Environment Protection: In October 2010, Deputy Mayor of Addis Ababa attended the Beijing Forum on Sustainable Development of Cities, and discussed with other attendees at the Mayors' Sub-Forum such topics as environmental protection, ecological preservation, building of energy-saving city and the future of cities, and exchanged opinions on how to coordinate socioeconomic development, resource and environment protection worldwide.
Culture: In July 2014, Beijing held in Addis Ababa the Charming Beijing photo exhibition, the exhibition of Beijing's intangible cultural heritage, and Night of Beijing performance, which were very popular among the locals.