Somaliland: Communique HLPF Istanbul

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While Somaliland supports the Somali New Deal process and welcomes engagement by the international

community, regretfully Somaliland will not be able to participate in the High Level Partnership Forum in

Istanbul for the same reasons that our Government was not able to participate in the previous Fora in

Brussels and Copenhagen.

Somaliland and Somalia find themselves at very different stages of development in social, political and

security terms. Our country’s national needs and priorities are fundamentally different to Somalia’s. Our

presence, therefore at the HLPF in Istanbul would not be appropriate. We wish to remind the

international community that Somaliland will be celebrating 25 years as an independent country this

year and that as a state it meets the full criteria for statehood. Somaliland has overcome a legacy of

conflict and civil war, rebuilt its devastated economy, secured peace and stability within its borders, and

established democratic governance in the interests of its people.

Somaliland has since 2010, developed its own Somaliland 2030 Vision and corresponding National

Development Plan (NDP) which highlight Somaliland’s own development priorities; tailored to our

specific context and needs. In line with our support for the New Deal process, the Somaliland

Government and civil society further prioritized these needs through the development of the Somaliland

Special Arrangement (SSA). The SSA was adopted as a guiding document for the receipt of development

assistance and forms a distinct and separate component of the broader Somali New Deal Compact. Both

the National Development Plan and SSA are due to end this year and are currently in the process of

being externally evaluated in line with DAC criteria. The results of this evaluation will form the basis for

the development of our new NDP for 2017-2021.

Our lack of attendance at the conference should in no way be read as a reluctance to speak with and

cooperate with Somalia on an equal basis regarding international aid and development issues. Indeed,

as part of the communiques emerging from our ongoing political dialogue with Somalia was the express

statement that both parties “agree to encourage and facilitate international aid and development

provided to Somaliland”. Our decision also does not mean that we do not wish to continue our

important direct engagement with the international community. On the contrary, Somaliland is

extremely grateful for the international community’s support and friendship across a whole range of

important issues and wishes to continue this engagement through various bi-lateral and multi-lateral

mechanisms that include its own High Level Coordination Fora.

However, I would like to stress to our international partners, that Somaliland should be allocated a fair

allocation of any development aid pledged during the HLPF. The development support given to

Somaliland makes a vital contribution to Somaliland’s progress, prosperity and continued security and

the impact is clear to see on the ground. Somaliland and its people should not suffer inadvertently for

not being present at this Forum. We support the Partnership Principles of the New Deal, and hope to

work with the international community in the future to ensure both Somaliland and Somalia emerge as

strong, stable and democratic countries.

Ahmed Aden Ismail (Keyse)

Vice Minister and Acting Minister

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