The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH has been working in Somalia since 1964. After two decades in which cooperation consisted solely of transitional and humanitarian assistance, GIZ resumed its activities in further sectors, including infrastructural development and food and nutrition security, in early 2015. GIZ has around 10 international and 60 national staff members working in Somalia at present. The projects and programmes are managed from GIZ’s country office in Kenya.
Somalia is one of the world’s poorest and most fragile countries. During the civil war, the state was unable to deliver basic services, such as health care, or maintain the country’s infrastructure. Armed conflicts and natural disasters have displaced more than one million Somalis within their own country.
After more than 25 years of civil war, the election of the Federal Government of Somalia in 2012 marked the start of a new chapter in the country’s history. A year later, a total of 40 countries and organisations concluded an agreement with Somalia, known as the New Deal, in order to support its transition to peace and prosperity. The country still faces major challenges in relation to health care and food security. The security situation remains critical in much of the country, especially in South and Central Somalia, greatly restricting international organisations’ access to many areas.
Cooperation between Germany and Somalia focuses on the following areas:
- infrastructure and reconstruction
- rural development and resilience.
On behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and the European Union, GIZ is currently coordinating six projects in Somalia. One of these projects assists local road-building authorities to rebuild the main transport routes. GIZ is also working with various Somali authorities and institutions and with private sector partners on developing a sustainable strategy for the maintenance of the road network. Restoring the road network also builds Somalia’s economic capacities, enabling goods to reach their destination more quickly and reliably while also achieving substantial cost savings.
A further project supported by GIZ aims to improve health care and advisory services for pregnant women, mothers, newborns and young children by training Somalis as midwives, obstetricians and nutrition advisors. The project also assists Somali health authorities to improve their efficiency and local coordination capacities.
In the region of Somaliland, GIZ is working with KfW on expanding the water supply and sanitation system and introducing sustainable land management. In the Sahil region, GIZ is supporting efforts to modernise livestock husbandry and agriculture so that settled farmers and nomadic pastoralists are better protected from potential crises such as droughts.
As part of a BMZ special initiative for refugees, GIZ is supporting the reintegration of returnees in their home communities and the integration of internally displaced persons in host communities in southern Somalia. Since 2017, a project implemented under the One World – No Hunger Initiative has been promoting fish consumption in Kismayo in order to improve local food and nutrition security.
Projects and programmes