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Saturday, June 18, 2011

The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) East Africa Mission on June 7th 2011 rolled out an ambitious program to enhance business investment and economic opportunities in the self-declared republic of Somaliland.

The developed agency which launched a blueprint multimillion initiative dubbed ‘Partnership
for Economic Growth’ in the capital Hargeisa, says it seeks to improve the environment for
investment and expand economic opportunities in the tiny Northern region of troubled Somalia

“We believe in the resiliency and entrepreneurial spirit of the Somali people,” said Acting
USAID East Africa Mission Director, John Power. “This partnership will not only benefit the
local economy, but will also promote stability.”

The US’s largest aid agency will provide Somaliland’s business communities with new
opportunities to help them improve their incomes and build a better future.

As Hargeisa emerges from a backdrop of historical destruction, the USAID led program will
address strategic economic fields both in the private and public sectors.

“The Partnership for Economic Growth will work with a broad range of government authorities
and private sector to assess strengths, weaknesses and investment opportunities in the most
productive Somali value chains, including livestock, fisheries, gums and resins” USAID said in a
press statement

Part of the program also includes addressing the role of women in entrepreneurship by helping
women groups achieve some form of sustainable development through enhancement of their
much neglected businesses.

“It will improve access to business development services, especially for women entrepreneurs.
It will support the development of regulatory policies to do business better and ultimately attract
more investment” the statement read in part.

At a colorful function attended by representatives from the Ministries of Commerce Industry and
Tourism, Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries, the Chamber of Commerce, financial institutions,
private sector, women entrepreneurs and local associations, Somaliland authorities hailed the
initiative describing these efforts as one that will revitalize the economic mainstay of the region.

“The private sector is the pillar of the economy,” said Abdulahi Dirie Jama, Secretary General of
the Chamber of Commerce. “It is a source of revenue for the government and a major supplier of
livelihood for residents.”

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