How Somaliland transitioned to stability sans direct aid, recognition

Men waiting in a queue hold up their voter’s identification cards during the 2010 presidential election in Somaliland. A self-declared state since 1991, it owes its stability largely to a peace process that was led and funded locally. Photo by: Teresa Krug / CC BY-NC

The dramatically divergent paths that Somalia and Somaliland took after a struggle led the latter to become a self-declared state in 1991 run counter to the conventional notions of the factors that drive successful peace processes and, perhaps more importantly, spur development actors to rethink the needs of post-conflict situations.

More than two decades after the collapse of the Somali central government, Somalia continues to be a major recipient of foreign aid. Official development assistance to Somalia amounted to $5.4 billion from 2003 to 2012, with the proportion of ODA given as humanitarian aid averaging 68 percent in the same period. According to Global Humanitarian Assistance, Somalia was the second-largest recipient of humanitarian aid in 2011, when humanitarian assistance to the country peaked at $1.1 billion.

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About the author

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    Anna Patricia Valerio

    Anna Patricia Valerio is a Manila-based development analyst focusing on writing innovative, in-the-know content for senior executives in the international development community. Before joining Devex, Patricia wrote and edited business, technology and health stories for BusinessWorld, a Manila-based business newspaper.