The Somaliland Diaspora community has played a remarkably historical role in the reconstruction and development of the country. The Diaspora communities have been one of the primary contributory sources for the economic growth in the private development sector since regaining Somaliland independence. There are no accurate data currently on remittances however it is estimated to be $500-$900 million per year. It is also estimated that the remittance from the Diaspora communities accounts for over 50% of the per capita income.
There has been a highly noticeable increase in respect of the Diaspora-invested businesses/SMEs that have proliferated in the Republic of Somaliland since the last decade recent years mainly in the capital city, Hargeisa, but also many in the other major cities
Many Somalilandes, mostly returnees from the United Kingdom, but also the Scandinavian countries, Canada, the Gulf Countries, Australia and the United States have invested in small to medium scale businesses in different economic sectors not limited to but include tourism, real estate, numerous in the service sector – catering, accommodations, attractions, lodging, health and education, recreational services, also the manufacturing sector. They have extensively invested assorted sectors in the real estate industry. They built nice-looking, beautifully-structured houses, hotels, and brought innovative trade services which best contributes to the city landscape, tourism attractions, and many essential for the public needs facilities both in the capital city, and in the other six major cities including Borama, Burao, and Las’anod.
The reality is that the Somaliland Diaspora communities have played a significant part in reestablishing peace and stability coupled with the confidence for a progressive democracy which enhances their ability to repatriate and invest in their country of origin should they wish to do so.
The Somaliland Diaspora Agency (SLDA) roughly estimates that over a thousand Somaliland entrepreneurs from the Diaspora community are already investing in the country also in major multiple investments in Somaliland. The benefits of the Diaspora communities’ contribution to the economic growth through the increase of the labor industry as well as essential government tax revenues cannot be understated.
The Somaliland Diaspora Agency at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs & International Cooperation has been engaged in developing Somaliland National Diaspora Policy and long term strategic planning through a consultative process since 2016 and has launched the initiative of the “Somaliland Diaspora Business Investment Survey” in October 2017. The first phase of the survey currently goes in Hargeisa, and is planned to extend to the other major cities and towns including Borama, Berbera, Burao, Las’anod, and Erigavo of the Republic of Somaliland.
The overall purpose of the Survey is to extract an effective evaluation and ascertain the extent and level of the Somaliland Diaspora investment in the private sector.
Specific objectives of the Survey are not limited to but also include identifying the varieties of the Diaspora-invested businesses and the sectors involved, the values and extent of the investments, the extent of the contributions through job creation in conjunction with the diversities of the host countries of the Diaspora communities.
Registration Campaign of the Diaspora-invested businesses in Somaliland:
Regrettably, we currently have less than half of the estimated Diaspora-invested businesses in the Diaspora Business Investment Database for our Agency. As a result we have initiated an in-house independent assessment to further bolster our database for interested entrepreneurs. For this reason, the Somaliland Diaspora Agency is taking this opportunity to help these businesses get registered with SLDA in order to create a working relationship and networking and the sharing of information.
There are teams currently from SLDA who are conducting the survey moving round the markets and the different parts of Hargeisa visiting both those businesses already in our database and those who were not including the ones opened by the Diaspora only in the recent years.
Online Registration System of the Diaspora-invested Businesses:
In order to facilitate the registration process, and the survey as well, we have created online registration form in the SLDA website www.sldiaspora.org which all the esteemed Diaspora entrepreneurs throughout the regions of the country can have access and fill in the form to answer only the very basic questions regarding the business details, and so get connected. Therefore, we kindly call for you to click the link http://sldiaspora.org/index.php/database/somaliland-diaspora-business-survey2017 and complete the form. This is not only cooperative step for the registration but is obliging for survey mission as well.
For further information, please contact Tel 063 6487552/063 3215146, Ms Sahra Mohamed Hashi, Director of the Planning & Research Dept of SLDA, and the official in charge of this project, or email to firstname.lastname@example.org / email@example.com.
Finally, we are very thankful to all the Diaspora entrepreneurs/investors for their cooperation and giving time to provide time for interviews and information to the Survey Team, as well as those who are contacting us on the phone telling us their business physical addresses/location, or completing the online form http://sldiaspora.org/index.php/database/somaliland-diaspora-business-survey2017 in the SLDA www.sldiaspora.org. Our special thanks also go the Diaspora entrepreneurs in Hargeisa or elsewhere, and who by themselves visiting us in the SLDA Head Office inside the Compound of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs & International Cooperation of the Republic of Somaliland, just coming to bring us their business details, and making registration as well to support successful implementation of the Survey.
Published by the Somaliland Diaspora Agency
Ministry of Foreign Affairs & International Cooperation
Hargeisa, Republic of Somaliland
Tel: 063 6487552, Nov 10, 2017