Somaliland's Economy Remains Steady And Progressive
By Abdulaziz Al-Mutairi
Somaliland is progressing towards achieving its economy goals on two key commitments including providing education for everyone in the country starting from primary school until university. This commitment is almost accomplished as the students start schooling and enroll the universities in their own hometowns in Somaliland .
The second key elements is providing suitable environment for foreign investors mainly from Middle East, Europe, America and Far East . The strong security, stability and democracy contribute in turning Somaliland into Commercial and Financial Hub of the region in the very near future.
The foreign companies can find the entire infrastructures to run their business like electricity, water, security and well-qualified English speaking graduates. Today, Somaliland can proudly say "We produce half million English speaking professionals in every three years". This reminds me, the speech of Indian Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh at US Congress saying "We produce millions of English speaking and well-qualified professionals to international job markets per annum." This sets India as the role model of Somaliland in economy development.
Somaliland stepped up efforts to reduce the use of gasoline in the country, and today Somaliland Presidential Palace is using solar system instead of oil to generate their electricity power. This is free democracy where reformation starts from top office but not in the public. Somaliland Electricity Authority announced the new power revolution of utilizing the sun energy in electricity production; this is the first step towards wider economy reforms. The reform may look slower but will remain steady to achieve objectives and encourage of local products. Economy wise, Somaliland will look very developed in next 15 years.
Somaliland 's top priority is to prevent overheating inflation of living cost, which damaged many poor countries worldwide. The soaring prices are another challenge; this can be controlled by encouraging the local products. Today Somaliland 's agriculture sector mainly from Gabiley and Awdal regions can provide enough food supplies to the country including wheat and corn.
Somaliland exports, mainly the livestock are the economy backbone. The local newspapers reported large number of Arabian businessmen pouring into Somaliland, and signing business deals with their Somaliland counterparts.
The current elevated oil prices around the world resulted worldwide increase of prices of consumption items including Rice, Sugar, Wheat…etc. This is not at the hands of the government of Somaliland , it is an international issue that affected everywhere in the world as result of towering oil prices. Somaliland people took initiative steps to use the locally produced goods instead of foreign ones.
Somaliland Central Bank kept the exchange rate of Somaliland Shillings under control against US dollars. Somaliland shilling is very valuable compare to Djibouti currency.
The people, mainly in the eastern regions of Somaliland , are passing through difficult time due to increasing prices of the basic food items. The government carried out projects in these regions to avail the basic social services like water and school projects.
Today, the major cities in the east regions of Somaliland like Laasanod City are enjoying free water supplies and 90% of the children are schooling everyday. The illegitimate administration, Puntland, even failed to establish such basic services during illegal occupation in these regions. Security is another important factor in Laasanod, where it is difficult to see armed militia or individuals in the city. This is the quality of Somaliland .
In Somaliland , Human Development ends Poverty:
The human development is measurement of combination of life expectancy, literacy, education attainment and GDP per capita. Somaliland improved all these measurements without international community support. The life expectancy of Somaliland mothers improved due international obstetrics/gynecology standard services by Adna Maternity Clinic in Hargeysa and similar clinics in other major cities, which helps thousands of mothers with childbirth difficulties.
Also, the security and lack of fighting will surely enhance the life expectancy of people in all different ages.
Literacy and Education attainment is been reduced by the government and private schools owners, and today Somaliland can proudly say that 75% of its children attend schools. This is achievement in 17 years without international support. GDP per Capita, will be calculated after recognition – Insha Allah.
The Infant mortality rate was reduced sharply in Somaliland as per the statistics of Ministry of Health. All these is been done in 15 years, what incredible progress!!!
Ladies and Gentlemen, Africans need to learn from Somaliland and India , where poverty will be history in the next coming years. Somaliland invests in human development and providing good quality schooling system to its children; the citizens have equal access to the education system.
Investment experts acknowledged that best investment is "Human Investment". The children of Somaliland are one of the most precious assets in the country. Somaliland is capable of producing half million well-trained professionals in each three years. It is very remarkable achievement by young nation like Somaliland and without outside help. Human Development is the key to achieve better economy of tomorrow.
Somaliland 's modern development history started on 26th June 1960 but unfortunately failed to continue due to illegitimate union with Italian Somalia on 1st July 1960. The people of Somaliland suffered under Siyad Barre (ruler of Somalia 1969-1991) dictatorship that did not help the people and even did not allow them to help them selves.
In mid 1980´s, a group of university graduated youth named UFO (a type of whirlwind signaling a change in the weather) organized them selves at their own expenses to make change in social services in Somaliland . They decided to support their people in Somaliland like Hargeysa, particularly after Siyad Barre government failed to provide good social services. They supplied beds to Hargeysa Hospital and stationery to the school children.
Siyad Barre arrested them for supporting the public until collapse of his government in 1991. This was the kind of pressure on Somalilanders, who even wished to help them selves without the government. Until today, many jealousy Somalis who campaign against Somaliland believe similar ideology of Siyad Barre that says "Don't develop and progress if we are not". My Somaliland friends told me such people are called in Somali language "XAASID". Majority of UFO members are active and living in different parts of the world.
Somaliland people are born to be progressive and developed regardless of the obstacles they face in their way towards the top. Somaliland people are very tolerant and peaceful; the war is the last option to consider; the people mainly don't look into politics and focus their personal business unlike Somalia where everybody is politician; this is what restored the law and order in Somaliland .
We, the free people, call the international community including EU, AU, IGAD and Arab League to recognize Somaliland, because the people of Somaliland can make better difference in the world.