Somaliland: How Khat Consumes over 30% of Gross Domestic Product Annually


khat chewing session

Somalilandsun- It’s estimated 90 percent of the adult male Somaliland population chews khat for “mirqaan,” the Somali word for the buzz it can give.

Nowadays khat is so enmeshed with Somaliland culture and daily life it’s become an important tax earner for the government. In 2014, khat sales generated 20 percent of the $152 million budget, according to the Ministry of Finance.

For Ethiopia, khat is a major earner too: even Somaliland spends $524 million a year, about 30 percent of gross domestic product, on Ethiopian khat Writers James Jeffery in a piece titled How a mild stimulant generates hundreds of millions of dollars.