Somalia fit and ready for business, says PM

Somalia Prime Minister Hamza Abdi Barre addressing delegates at the Blue Economy Investment Conference in Mogadishu. [File, Courtesy]

Somalia is confident it will position itself as a key investor in the blue economy investment sector in the region, despite the harsh economic environment. 

Somalia Prime Minister, Hamza Abdi Barre, launching the Somalia Blue Economy Investment Promotion conference in Mogadishu yesterday, detailed the plans of his National Interest Government (Dan-Qaran) regarding investment in the country.

The conference, running from Saturday, November 11 to Sunday, November 12 presented reports and research related to the development of fishing and the Blue Economy in Somalia, that will lead the region’s and international investors to invest in the sector.

Barre noted that the country is facing fundamental challenges in terms of economic development, including security and the lack of development of the country's economic infrastructure, adding that it is necessary to work hand in hand with the citizens and friendly institutions to overcome challenges by opening and widening the trading zone.

"We assure Somali people and friends that we are ready to do business from now on, to benefit from each other. I thank everyone who supported us in the debt relief program of our country."

Barre also thanked the representatives of the international community who attended the meeting and Somali businessmen for contributing to the Blue Economy investment in the country.

Somalia Minister of Fisheries and Blue Economy, Ahmed Hassan Adan reiterated that the conference was held to show the world the opportunities available for investment in the blue economy in the East African country, noting that it will be an equal opportunity for all parties, while acknowledging the role USAID and UK Development agencies had played in implementing strategies for the meeting.

"I am telling the Somali people, you have been given an opportunity to work with international stakeholders who want to invest in the country, especially in this sector.”

Somalia PM Hamza Abdi Barre (centre) at the Blue Economy Investment Conference in Mogadishu. [File]

Abdullahi Aden, Director of the Blue Economy at the Ministry said that they have established a strategy to benefit from the blue economy so that the country becomes self-sufficient in the future.

Other international players including Chinese Ambassador FEI Shengchao spoke in detail about the importance of the relationship between Somalia and China; specifically, about cooperation in the field of fisheries and the Blue Economy, underlining that China is one of the countries that have close relations with Somalia as far as fishing is concerned.

"Why blue economy is important to Somalia? It doesn’t need much explanation because Somalia and China have been brothers and sisters for centuries."

"The Somali leadership has demonstrated strong commitment to progress and resilience demonstrating that a bright future for the country is possible. However, as we all know climate change threatens the growth and the competitiveness of key productive sectors in Somalia,” head of USAID Sheri Nauane Duncan-Jones said.

At least 1.48 million people have been displaced in Somalia so far due to the impact of floods.

The conference was held and concluded in Mogadishu on Sunday, November 12 at the Halane Center.