Since the collapse of the Barre regime in 1991, the situation in Somalia has been characterized by violent conflict and state failure. With an internationally recognized government and the passing of a transitional constitution in 2012, Somalia has embarked on the difficult road to building a state. Today, the situation on the ground is still complex. Parts of the Somali territory are still controlled by the jihadist al-Shabaab militia and conflicts between clans, some of them generations old, are still ongoing. Recurring natural disasters threaten the food security and the economic development of millions of people. The Federal Republic of Germany supports the Somali authorities, various non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and the civil society on a federal, as well as a local level in meeting the multiple humanitarian and political challenges.
Germany’s engagement in Somalia can be categorized into three pillars, namely; stabilization and crisis prevention, development cooperation, and humanitarian aid. In 2017 alone, the Federal Foreign Office invested almost 10 million EUR (12.4 million USD) in stabilization-related projects. In October 2017, the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) pledged to support new projects with 103 million EUR, bringing total German development spending in Somalia to 270 million EUR (335 million USD). By providing humanitarian aid to the tune of 96 million EUR (almost 120 million USD) in 2017 alone, Germany has significantly contributed to preventing famine in the face of one of the most severe droughts experienced in decades.
In the wake of the ongoing federalization process, the former autonomous region of Puntland has successfully been reintegrated into the Somali state. However, Somalia is still a divided country. The northern part, formerly British-Somaliland, declared its independence as far back as in 1991. Despite this, the “Republic of Somaliland” is still not internationally recognized. Nevertheless, the region has achieved a remarkable degree of stability and democratic standards. It has held several widely accepted elections followed by a smooth transfer of power, most recently in November 2017.