Somalilandsun- Growth , Enterprise, Employment & Livelihoods Project (GEEL) is organizing the first Somaliland Input Stakeholder Forum from July 19 – 20, 2017 at Maan-Soor Hotel in Hargeisa. The two-day event brings together regional and local agro-input dealers, producers, government counterparts and financial service providers to discuss practical approaches to overcoming financial, logistic and policy challenges facing the industry.
Agriculture is an important mainstay in the Somaliland economy, contributing to about 60 percent of the country’s gross domestic product. Growth in the industry is however deterred by inefficient farming practices, limited access to input dealers and markets, as well as lack of investment. Improved infrastructure surrounding production and exploration of regional partnerships is key to addressing these challenges.
This forum aims to improve the availability and use of quality affordable inputs in Somaliland by creating strong networks between framers and suppliers, improving access to accurate and reliable market information and discussing challenges and solutions for a sustainable production system. A significant component of the forum is the exhibition, where over 70 participants from around the country will promote their products, interact and learn about new technologies.
Improvements to the agricultural sector will require smart investments and coordination amongst all stakeholders. Somalia’s Growth, Enterprise, Employment and Livelihoods (GEEL) activity is continuously working with Somalis in the private sector and government to attract capital investment to create new businesses and expand existing ones, while introducing advanced skills and technologies to improve efficiency and increase compliance with internationally standards.
Somaliland is uniquely situated to meet rapidly rising demand for quality produce, and as the country continues to engage more with the international market, greater financial and technical support is needed to match private sector efforts, and take advantage of trade opportunities. Increasing productivity will require the collaborative efforts to test and take up new and improved technologies, and serious investments in infrastructure and markets offer the greatest opportunity for the county’s agriculture sector to reach its potential.
GEEL is a USAID funded project that works with the private sector to promote sustainable and inclusive economic growth in Somaliland and Somalia; focusing on both systemic initiatives that affect the whole economy, as well as sectoral initiatives benefiting the dairy, fisheries, sesame, and fruit sectors. The project addresses challenges and opportunities that are common among multiple sectors and builds the capacity of internal investors as well as the Somali diaspora eager to invest in business opportunities, prioritizing opportunities in industries likely to attract women and youth who have been marginalized from pursuing economic opportunities.