Chapter IX
Economic Development
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Community Development
Jul. 07, 1964
... The past year has seen increased emphasis placed upon the role which community development
programmes can play in improving the life of the Ethiopian farmer.  The fundamental purpose of a
community development movement is to teach the rural people of Our Empire that through
co-operative self-help and a united approach to common problems, the vast potential for their own
self-improvement which they themselves represent can be translated into effective programmes
which can do much to improve their standard of living.  While the inauguration of community
development programmes in Ethiopia is of relatively recent date, much has already been
accomplished.  A Community Development Training Centre was inaugurated by Us at Awassa for
the training of personnel who will subsequently go throughout Our Empire disseminating among
Our people the knowledge they acquired during their training.

The co-operative movement has long been known throughout the world, and We Ourself have on
numerous occasions urged Our people to join increasingly in co-operative enterprises.  
Co-operatives must, ultimately, play a highly important role in the growth of Our economy, and no
time can be lost in availing ourselves of the benefits to be derived from them.  During the past year,
We decided upon a programme designed to provide specific encouragement to the creation of
agricultural co-operatives, and a number of Government-sponsored co-operative farms have been
established by Our Ministry of National Community Development.  We have provided land,
agricultural machinery and expert assistance to these farms, and We entertain high hopes that
their success will spur Our people to embark increasingly upon co-operative endeavours.  Should
Our people fail to avail themselves of this opportunity, the consequences will be regrettable
Haile Selassie the First - July 7, 1964