Bajajs, motorised rickshaws, on the roads of Mogadishu, the capital of Somalia

Somalia State-building under very difficult circumstances

Decades of military dictatorship and civil war have caused government institutions in Somalia to collapse. In 2012, state order was formally restored with a new, temporary constitution and Somalia was made into a federal republic. So far, however, efforts to bring lasting peace and stability to the country have been unsuccessful.

Straight to
A soldier of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) on patrol in Mogadishu

The state-building process is hampered by persistent conflicts between the central government and the federal states, clan rivalries and terrorist threats. The Islamist terrorist group al-Shabaab has control over vast parts of southern Somalia. In the north-west of the country, the region of Somaliland declared itself an independent republic in 1991; however, it is not recognised internationally.

Repeated natural disasters and the impacts of climate change are exacerbating the crisis. The country is experiencing its worst drought in 40 years. According to the United Nations, more than seven million people were facing food insecurity in June 2022 – that is almost half the country’s roughly 16 million inhabitants. Around 330,000 children were facing severe malnutrition. In the first quarter of 2022 alone, drought displaced more than half a million people from their homes.

The poor security situation and a steep rise in food and fuel prices as a result of the war in Ukraine are making it extremely challenging to provide humanitarian assistance for those affected.

German development cooperation with Somalia

Somalia is one of what are called “nexus and peace partners” of German development cooperation. The BMZ works with these countries to address the structural causes of conflict, displacement and violence. The aim of cooperation with Somalia is to give targeted support to Somali institutions and thereby help stabilise the country, build peace and create a better future for the people. The core areas of this cooperation are:

  • Peaceful and inclusive societies
  • Transformation of agricultural and food systems
  • Sustainable economic development, training and employment

In 2020, the BMZ made 114 million euros available to Somalia; in 2021, commitments of 54.6 million euros were made. In response to the current drought emergency, the BMZ has increased the funding being provided for transitional development assistance and for the special initiatives “Displaced persons and host countries” and “Transformation of agricultural and food systems”.

A young woman with a Somali flag during a demonstration in Marka, Somalia

Core area “Peaceful and inclusive societies” Preventing conflicts, restoring stability Internal link

With a view to increasing political stability and social cohesion in Somalia, German development cooperation activities are targeted towards addressing the structural causes of conflicts.

Junge Maispflanzen in Somalia

Core area “Transformation of agricultural and food systems” Adapting agriculture to climate change Internal link

In order to improve the food situation, boost agricultural production and slow down the crisis-driven rural exodus, climate-resilient agriculture is being supported in Somalia via German development cooperation.

Student with books in Jowhar, Somalia

Core area “Sustainable economic development, training and employment” Modern vocational training to give people better prospects Internal link

Vocational training and employment are important focus points for German development cooperation in Somalia with a view to reducing poverty and offering young people in particular a better future. Unemployment among young people in Somalia is currently extremely high.

Current situation

Security situation
A soldier of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) on patrol in Mogadishu
Social situation
Two boys carry a water canister next to a flock of sheep near Jowhar, Somalia.
Economic situation
Livestock being loaded for export at the port of Mogadishu

As at: 16/08/2022