Somalia launches new programs to steer development



The United Nations, the European Union and other donors on Wednesday inked six new joint programs with Somalia that will finance various development projects across the country.

The programs through the Somalia Development and Reconstruction Facility (SDRF), within the framework of the Somali New Deal Compact, directly support the peace-building and the key deliverables of the government’s Vision 2016.

Speaking during the signing ceremony in Mogadishu, Minister of Planning and International Cooperation Abdirahman Ali Aynte said the programs have specific focus on achieving results in the state formation process, constitutional review, electoral support, rule of law, youth employment, and institutional capacity development.

“This is an important agreement, which will strengthen the government institutions. And it is also a milestone for the cooperation between Somalia and our international partners,” Aynte said.

The initiatives will in particular build a stronger civil service at federal and state levels, support more effective delivery of justice services, and provide thousands of jobs for Somali youth.

They will also support the formation of new federal member states in the South and Central regions of Somalia, undertaking the review of the constitution, and building capacity of the country to deliver democratic electoral political processes.

The EU, Britain, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, and Italy have pledged more than 106 million U.S. dollars over three years towards these priority programs.

Daria Fane, Head of Cooperation at the EU Delegation to Somalia, said the launch of these programs reflects the strong commitment of the international community and Somali government to work as one in order to improve the lives of Somali women, men and children.

“The signature of the new Joint Programs is a major step in the New Deal Compact implementation. It will allow us to empower significantly the federal government and to support directly core state functions,” she said, adding that the programs will benefit all areas of the country, including Puntland and the newly emerging federal member states.

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