Somalia has a small-scale industrial sector based on the processing of agricultural products. During the Civil War, many factories struck again, but in recent years some of them have resumed production and new small businesses have been started.
The industry produces bottled water, canned fish, soft drinks, furniture, plastic pipes and bags, soap, fabrics, leather goods and printed matter. In Bossasso in Puntland there is Las Korey, a factory for the production of fish preserves that to some extent exports. In 2004, a cocacola factory was opened in Mogadishu. The production was later down for several years before it started again in 2012. The same year, the soft drink company also opened a new facility in Somaliland.
Livestock (sheep, goats, camels and cows), hides and skins have traditionally been exported from northern Somalia to countries around the Persian Gulf and account for a large proportion of export earnings. Bananas are also exported.
Since a fever disease hit animals in East Africa in the early 2000s, several Arab countries have for a number of years introduced all imports of cattle from Somalia. From 2010, exports have recovered. In 2014, according to the UN, Somalia exported five million animals to the Persian Gulf countries, which was the highest figure in 20 years, generating revenue of $ 340 million.
Nearly two-thirds of exports go to Saudi Arabia. The United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and other Arab countries are other important exporting countries. Some livestock are also sold to Kenya and Ethiopia. At the same time, some of the livestock exported from these countries comes.
Banana exports resumed in 2013.
The trade deficit is large, as imports are much larger than exports.
FACTS – FOREIGN TRADE
Main export goods
livestock, livestock products, bananas
Largest trading partner
Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Yemen, Djibouti, Kenya
There is no significant tourism in Somalia.
However, there are many beautiful beaches, not least in Somaliland where the situation is relatively calm. The largest city of Hargeisa has hotels for both budget travelers and those who want more luxury. It is also easy to get to the smaller town of Berbera, which was damaged less than Hargeisa during the 1991 civil war. Culturally interested visitors can reach the city of Zeila, former capital of the Sultanate of Adal, which had its heyday in the 800s and 900s, or to Las Geel to see the cave paintings discovered in 2003.
New shift on the Prime Minister post
Prime Minister Abdiweli Ahmed loses a vote of no confidence in Parliament. 153 members vote for him to resign and 80 for him to remain. On December 24, Parliament appointed Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke as new prime minister. He has previously been Somali head of government in 2009-2010.
al-Shabaab takes on new Islamist attack in Kenya
al-Shabaab claims to have carried out an attack in northeastern Kenya, where 36 Christian workers were killed near a quarry. Experts on the conflict in Somalia interpreted al-Shabaab’s increased activity in the neighboring country as a result of the group being pushed back more and more at home.
UN envoy is criticized after bribery charges against Parliament
UN Special Envoy for Somalia, Nicholas Kay, expresses concern that some members of the Somali Parliament should have received money to vote in a possible declaration of confidence against Prime Minister Abdiweli Ahmed. After that, Kay is urged by both the President and MPs not to interfere in the country’s internal affairs. Reports also come that Parliament’s work has been paralyzed by the conflict between the president and the prime minister. The tone is raised after Abdiweli Ahmed dismissed two ministers, who are said to be friends of the president, from the government.
New measures against charcoal exports will strike al-Shabaab
At the end of the month, the United Nations Security Council adopts a resolution that gives countries the right to inspect ships outside the Horn of Africa to fix those who violate the embargo on exporting charcoal from Somalia. al-Shabaab receives a large portion of its revenue through charcoal exports to Kuwait, Oman and the United Arab Emirates, among others.
Presidential advisers are accused of supplying al-Shabaab with weapons
The UN investigators in the expert group for Somalia and Eritrea accuse one of the president’s advisers, businessman Musa Haji Mohamed Ganjab, of having supplied al-Shabaab with weapons. He denies all charges. The UN group will present its report later this fall, but the part where the evidence against Ganjab is presented will not be published.
Corridor and ATM – sign of progress
In the middle of the month, for the first time in two decades, Somalis can send mail inland. The postal service does not yet include shipments abroad. The week before, an ATM was first installed in Mogadishu.
Government forces take control of yet another port city
Somali forces take control of the Barawe port city southwest of Mogadishu, with the help of AU troops. al-Shabaab left the city without much resistance. The militant group had thus lost control of all the port cities previously controlled.
Godane is killed in US drone attack
On September 1, the United States launches a drone attack on targets in Lower Shabelle, killing al-Shabaab leader Ahmed Abdi Godane. He is succeeded by Sheikh Ahmed Umar Abu Ubaida, who belongs to the clan dir.
New battles north of Mogadishu
al-Shabaab attacks AU forces in the city of Buloburde north of Mogadishu. According to al-Shabaab, 18 people were killed in the clash: five men from their own ranks, nine AU soldiers and four Somali soldiers. The government claims that six al-Shabaab men were killed in the attack but says nothing about other losses.
New disaster threat looms
Somalia has been hit by drought and the UN warns that the country is facing an acute food crisis. According to the UN, the shortage of food is so great in parts of Mogadishu that the situation can almost be classified as a famine, and the aid organizations do not have the resources to help the 350,000 refugees who are in the city. The situation is almost as serious in six other cities.
Kenya claims 80 were killed in aviation raids against al-Shabaab camps
The Kenyan military says their battle plan has killed a total of 80 people in raids against what is said to be two of al-Shabaab’s camps in southern Somalia. The militant group denies that some rebels have been killed.
al-Shabaab claims to have carried out attacks in Kenya
In June, al-Shabaab assumes responsibility for two attacks in Kenya, when a total of nearly 60 people are killed. However, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta claims that domestic groups have done the deed.
Clan battles in the south
Struggles between rival militia groups in the Galgadud region require at least twelve lives. Clan battles are also reported from Lower Shabelle. These are said to have required at least 30 fatalities. Old tensions have risen to the surface after al-Shabaab was forced to give up control of the area in spring 2013.
MEPs demand the resignation of the president
More than 100 MPs sign a petition demanding the resignation of President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud because his government failed to create security in the country. He is also considered to have closed his eyes to the major problems of corruption and incompetence in his administration. Particularly serious to the president is that so many from his own clan, Hawyie, have signed the petition. According to an article in the journal Africa Confidential, it is not certain that it is the president they want to reach, but it is speculated that it is instead about other influential people in his vicinity.
Islamists call for holy war against Ethiopia
In the middle of the month, al-Shabaab leader Ahmad Abdi Godane urges all Somalis to jihad (holy war) against Ethiopia. He says that the Ethiopian and Kenyan troops in Somalia aim to divide the rest of the country between themselves.
New offensive against al-Shabaab
Ethiopian and Somali troops conquer the city of Rabdhure from al-Shabaab in the Bakol region. This is seen as the first step in a new offensive against the Islamist group. Later, Bulobarde is also taken some 20 miles north of Mogadishu. More cities will be occupied later by Amisom. At the same time, reports come that al-Shabaab destroyed water pumps and other infrastructure before they left.
No new reliefs in the arms embargo
The UN Security Council decides that the reliefs made in the arms embargo against the Somali government will remain in effect until October 25. Somalia’s government has asked for the sanctions to be lifted completely.
11 killed in assaults near the presidential palace
At least 11 people are killed and several injured in an attack at the presidential palace, Villa Somalia, in Mogadishu. This is the first time that al-Shabaab has succeeded in entering the well-guarded area where the President, the Prime Minister, the President and several ministers live.
International criticism of the president
At the same time, more and more signs are emerging that President Hassan Sheikh Mohamuds is losing support among former supporters around the world, not least the United Kingdom, the United States and France. The reasons for this are several: The security situation in the country, and especially Mogadishu in particular, has deteriorated, the president has failed to build effective relations with regional leaders, corruption allegations and no progress has been made to get the new constitution approved. Hassan Sheikh Mohamud is also criticized for wanting to make too many decisions on his own.
UN experts want to tighten arms embargo
In a secret stamped report, the UN expert group for Somalia and Eritrea calls on the Security Council to sharpen the arms embargo on Somalia once again. This is because some of the new weapons ended up in the hands of clan militia or sold in private arms markets in Mogadishu. The report states that the authorities have not been able to account for what has happened with shiploads of weapons from Uganda and Djibouti. An adviser to the president is also suspected of having prepared arms deliveries to al-Shabaab. The government rejects the allegations.
Ethiopian soldiers join the AU force
The more than 4,300 Ethiopian soldiers who have been stationed in Somalia since 2011 formally join Amisom.
The United States sends military advisers to Somalia
Mid-month announced by the United States sends five military advisers to Somalia.
Power change in Puntland
The Puntland presidential election on January 8 leads to a shift in power as Abdiweli Mohamed Ali defeats Abdirahman Muhammad Mahmud “Farole” by a margin of vote in the third vote of the day. Farole admits to being defeated. Abdiweli Mohamed Ali, is an economist and educated in the USA and was Somalia’s Prime Minister in 2011-2012. The new president promises to work to improve security and combat corruption in Puntland.