The Humanitarian Coordinator for Somalia, Peter de Clercq has welcomed the State of Qatar’s commitment to partner with Somalia amid growing calls for a new approach where sustained humanitarian action is complemented by long-term efforts to build the country’s resilience. Mr. de Clercq was addressing participants at the workshop for Qatar Humanitarian and Development partners on the Somalia Resilience and Recovery Framework held in Mogadishu on 2 December 2017.
Over the past decades Somalia has faced a vicious cycle of recurring droughts and protracted conflict that have led to loss of lives, caused mass displacement, and put the lives of millions of Somalis in peril and dependent on life-saving assistance. Since 2011, with the generous contribution by international partners, approximately USD 4.5 billion has been spent on the emergency response alone. In 2017, over $1.2 billion has been mobilized enabling humanitarians to avert a famine but the causes of Somalia’s fragility remain.
“I am encouraged to see the Government initiating discussions to forge a way forward on how to strengthen the structural resilience of Somalia to prevent future humanitarian disasters that undermine the country’s path to recovery and reconstruction,” said Mr. de Clercq.
“Effective and collective drought response has so far prevented famine in 2017, but much more is needed to trigger long-term resilience and development, and protect fragile progress and achievements.
We cannot continue to wait until the current crisis is over before we embark on promoting long-term solutions. We can help address the drivers of fragility and insecurity if we collectively act now.”
The Minister of Planning, Investment and Economic Development, Gamal M. Hassan, thanked the State of Qatar which recently signed a development agreement with the Federal Government of Somalia worth $200M for infrastructure development including support for education and youth employment initiatives.
“The impact of the recurrent climatic shocks continues to disrupt our development vision, hence the need for preventative measures and sustainable solutions that are based on resilience and sustainable development,” Minister Gamal M. Hassan told participants. “In 2018, as part of the Resilience and Recovery Framework, we aim to accelerate collaboration between humanitarian and development partners on the agreed collective outcomes.”
Ambassador Tariq Bin Ali Faraj Al-Ansari, Director of the International Cooperation Department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the State of Qatar, reaffirmed his country’s commitment to work with the Federal Government of Somalia and to align their funding with the National Development Plan priorities.
The State of Qatar provides support for humanitarian, resilience and recovery efforts through partners such as the Qatar Charity and the Red Crescent among others, in partnership with the UN and national authorities.
“Qatar’s support to Somalia is anchored on its principled stand on global commitments including the “leave no one behind” vision of the Agenda 2030. We provided US$210 million development assistance to Somalia since 2010.
Qatar also signed a $200 million bilateral agreement on 28 November 2017 with the Somali government focusing on job creation, infrastructure, fisheries and other economic sectors, to be implemented in partnership with the United Nations. Regional and global actors need to take a unified and coherent approach when supporting Somalia in order to be effective,” he underscored.
The 2018 Somalia Humanitarian Needs Overview launched in November shows that the unprecedented drought, spanning at least four consecutive poor rainy seasons, has resulted in severe and growing humanitarian needs across Somalia. Limited rain, displacement, lack of access to basic services and continuing conflict continue to drive needs. Some 6.2 million people need humanitarian assistance and protection assistance,
3.1 million of these need urgent life-saving assistance.