Published On: Wed, May 8th, 2013

Somaliland:Improving the country’s infrastructure

“Through better access to basic physical, Social services, health care, and education are the pillars to meet basic needs” 

by Omer Mohamed Jama


Somaliland is a young nation and the population growth is increasing day by day and needs massive improvements towards the country’s infrastructure.

The whole country is facing many challenges to improve infrastructure for economic development and municipal service delivery to ensure an increase of access to services across the country, more public infrastructure programmes must be implemented and put in place.

All infrastructure programmes are important, but some may be more urgent and important than others.

Improving living conditions through better access to basic physical, social services, health care, and education are the pillars to meet basic needs.

Infrastructure is basically the base in which economic growth is built upon. Roads, water system, mass transportations, airports, ports, bridges and utilities are all examples of infrastructure.

Good quality infrastructure is a key factor for sustainable development. It provides services that support economic growth and it enhances the trade.

Infrastructure investment and consumption of infrastructure services have significant implications for achievement of sustainable development objectives. It also encourages new investments across the economy, and also facilitates the flow of goods and services as well as regional economic growth.

On top of these above mentioned advantages, investing in infrastructure generates economic success, social benefits for individuals, communities and the whole country.

Infrastructure can be in many types, so let us take some of the important infrastructures which need to be improved and put into priority.

Transport infrastructures includes  roads, highway networks,  Bridges, Tunnels,  electrical systems  ( street lighting and Traffic lights )

Energy infrastructures include electrical power networks, local distribution.

Water management infrastructure includes (Drinking water supply throughout the country.

Communication infrastructure includes (Postal services, Telephone networks, mobile phones, Television and Radios.

Economic infrastructure (the financial system, including the banking system, financial institutions, exchange, financial regulations as well as accounting standards and regulations.

These are some types of infrastructures, so Somaliland needs to have infrastructure policies and project developments towards the country’s infrastructure specially the important and key areas that needs be improved and upgraded.

Though we are a very young nation which doesn’t have sufficient funds to finance these areas because of the very limited budget that we have, but we should make prioritisation of tasks.

Prioritisation of tasks:  If there are not sufficient resources to meet all the identified needs, it may be necessary to rank them in some way to decide which needs will be met first and which will be met later.

The key question is, what are the people’s priority needs and what infrastructure projects will best address those needs and what is the environmental impact and how it will affect the community and are these services affordable?

If we have specific answers for these above questions, then we need its implementation plan if we can.

The municipalities will have significant discretion in selecting priority projects from a menu when there are available funds to invest those important areas which can support the economic growth of the country.

There are some needs which are more urgent and important and there are some needs which are postponable.  The most important areas that need to be improved are as follows.

The country’s local roads, highways, sufficient water supply throughout the country, energy, health services, airports, ports, bridges schools and sanitation

These are more urgent and more important and are basic needs of the community.

Improving living conditions through better access to basic physical, social services, health care, and education are the key pillars to meet basic needs of the nation.

If there are any future infrastructure policies and project developments on infrastructure which has already been put in place, then what needs to be done is just its implementation plan.

Did the government allocate any budget programme to invest the country’s infrastructure so far?

Or is there any local government infrastructure development programme which has already been put in place?

If the government cannot contribute extra funds to local governments to invest those important areas which are more urgent and more important, then I would suggest that the government needs to form (A national Development Association) which can collect contributions from the nation’s business  people as well as Somaliland Diaspora, and then government can add to some money. This will be helpful if it can be done.

If the country’s infrastructure is improved, then this will support the country’s economic growth and can attract international investments, and it will help the local governments to generate own source revenues, strengthen financial management, environmental, and social systems.

Somaliland’s current local government management system must be improved and should be provided with adequate funds to meet their strategic infrastructure investment needs.   The government can also develop a new plan to support public infrastructure.

The government should set up a comprehensive national plan with a new strategy for meeting the infrastructure needs of the country and also put in place a budget proposal on infrastructure investments.  Investment in Somaliland public infrastructure can create jobs, bring economic growth and provide a high quality of life for families in every city and community across the country.

All these can be achieved if the government develops a new plan to support public infrastructure.

Investing in infrastructure is the key of economic growth. Investment in Somaliland public infrastructure can create more jobs and provide a high quality of life for families in every city and community across the country. We must put in place future infrastructure development programmes.

Failing to have a bright future plans on infrastructure development programmes will keep us back forwards and will put obstructions on future International investments.

Together we can make a difference, if we unite for the common interest of our nation.

Anything is possible as long as we have bright ambitions and the courage that we can do anything. It is possible for us to do whatever we choose, if we believe that we have the power to do the impossible.

Long live Somaliland.


Omer Mohamed Jama

Bristol UK


Displaying 13 Comments
Have Your Say
  1. Reporter says:

    Very attractive topic indeed, Somaliland diaspora can encourage their fellow people to boost their economy through learning their mistakes in the past and look forward the future.

  2. hadhka says:

    Protect the peace we have and all these things can be achieved. Peace of cake. Here in the UK some of their great motor ways are less then 70 years old.

    • Gobanimo says:

      I have heard even less than 70 years M25 was built about 30 years ago and some of the other major motor ways less than 70 years that you mentioned and still been refurbished, M1 refurbishment just finished recently you mentioned a good point of keeping the peace I wish the best for Somaliland government to promote the peace and the unity of the country in a challenging times

  3. Khalid says:

    Great Article Omar, it seems you have thought about this topic very carefully, I agree with you completely – infrastructure is the foundation for future sustainable development. I would like to add the devastating effect of deforestation on somaliland and this is something the government needs to address urgently

    • Elmi says:

      is the author an expert on the subject matter? Somali urban planners and architects are preferred to help the rebuilding of all the Somali cities and towns.

  4. Ilyas says:

    You talking about the infrastructure after 22 years of what you call it independence. Xasan should always be remember in the north, they started talking about developing and improving the infrastructure just after they got their share from the donations. Without it, you would have always been in your dusty towns.

  5. somaliland 1 says:

    Think you need to look at somalilands 2016 plan and 2030 plan and you will get all your answers

  6. Allemagan says:

    What you are reading here is copied from economics text books and has no relation to reality whatsoever.

    Let me explain:
    Roads and highways are the same ones that were built by Mohamed Siyad Barre's government 30 years ago.
    Sufficient water supply throughout the country: there is an acute shortage of potable water in the whole region including Hargeisa. Most of the households in urban centers such as Burao, Borama and Hargeisa are supplied by water tankers that truck it from dirty water wells. A water tank that can satisfy a family of five or seven sells for 35 US dollars.
    Energy: electricity is supplied by small unreliable generators owned by businessmen who import from the gulf (normally used and refurbished) for their electricity requirement and sell the excess to his neighbours. There is no main electrical generator that supplies reliable electricity to many residents in Hargeisa.
    Health, social services and sanitation: never heard of these luxuries.
    Schools: all private including primary school with poor education programs.
    Airports, ports, bridges: same infrastructure left by Siyad Barre's government. Where is the beef?

  7. Samo says:

    An advice to all the haters out there, this is a Somaliland site and all reports and posts are by Somalilanders, so if you are getting upset by what you are reading don't visit the site "Period".

    Do yourself a favour, waxba yaaney sonkortu iyo dhiig karku iden ku kicen…

    • ALL-AYOUBIE says:


      well said but the haters can't help wondering and getting sick about Somaliland bro.
      the only thing they can do is hate and makes more stronger.

  8. mawliid says:

    abslolutely amazing article and constructive suggestions omar, somaliland haters are even crying when they see our well educated people's suggestions to our country. you people from Somalia are full of jelous and you will never reach good until you stop the hatred. Somaliland has everything and it will reach the rest it misses. if you hate Somaliland or not its up to you somalis, no more unity. we are tried of you people. make your country peace and solve piracy, extrimism, raping woman and 21 years of war. Today the world has tired you and trying to help you to have peace. your country is controlled by african union troops and so you have alot of job to do. We don't hate you but you hate us. Stop weeping and beating your chests about an other ill fated union. never never.

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