An African Development Bank Group mission led by Abdirahman Beileh, Acting Director of the Agriculture and Agro-Industry Department, and comprising members of the Fragile States Unit and the East Africa Regional Resource Centre (EARC), visited Mogadishu, Federal Republic of Somalia, from February 14 to 19, 2013. The objective of the mission was to consult with the authorities of the Federal Republic of Somalia on strategic issues related to economic and institutional development priorities to pave the way for future Bank activities and operations in the country, as peace and reconciliation are rapidly becoming a reality. The mission to Somalia was preceded by a roundtable meeting with key development partners actively involved in Somalia for information sharing in Nairobi, chaired by Gabriel Negatu, Director of the EARC.
In Mogadishu, the mission met with Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, the President of the Federal Republic of Somalia, and the Prime Minister, Abdi Farah Shirdon, and other high-level Government officials from the Ministries of Finance and Planning, National Resources, Human Development and the Governor of the Central Bank of Somalia. The discussions focused primarily on how to re-engage the dialogue and exchange views on what should be the Government’s priorities and possible support in the recovery and reconstruction process of Somalia. Among others, the President emphasized the areas of security, justice, public financial management and capacity building as the top among current priorities.
The Bank acknowledged the fact that despite the arrears situation, it has intensified its re-engagement with Somalia in recent years, through dialogue and targeted support with the allocation of US $3.8 million under Pillar III (targeted support for capacity building and knowledge) of the Bank’s Fragile States Facility (FSF), as well as emergency assistance in 2010 and 2011 for the food and humanitarian crisis. With regard to arrears clearance, the Bank informed the authorities that Somalia would be eligible for support from the FSF Arrears Clearance Window (Pillar II), following a multi-stage eligibility assessment. The Bank took the engagement to immediately consult with the World Bank and IMF regarding arrears clearance for Somalia. The newly appointed Aid Coordination Unit in the Ministry of Finance has started a donor-mapping process in order to ensure synergies and complementarity of interventions.