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FAO in Somalia

Newsletters: FAO in Somalia, 2012 at a glance

The thematic newsletters in this section are produced in support of the FAO's work in Somalia, covering much of 2012, a year preceding the country's worst drought that led to famine in the south. In addition to FAO's emergency assitance, in response to the famine, the organization also worked to continue improving productivity of Somalia’s key sectors, livestock, agriculture and fisheries. Over the years of recurrent drought, floods and on-and-off conflict, productiving of these key sectors has drastically  declined and stagnated. With FAO's support, some farmers, pastoralists and fisherfolks now have access to inputs, training, equipment, cash and, marketing opportunities, and animal health services. The agency is also a key provider of information and analysis on food security, nutrition, livelihoods and natural resources anabling quick and timely decision making. For facts and background information, also see factsheets on current situation in Somaliaagriculturelivestockfisheries and FAO's 3-year Consolidated Appeals Process for three years 2013-15.

EU, Austria and UN food agencies are backing landmark initiative

For the first time, Somali farmers are turning themselves into suppliers of high-quality food assistance for their fellow Somali people. A new initiative backed by the European Union, the government of Austria and two United Nations food security agencies has helped Somali farmers achieve this major agricultural breakthrough in a region of the country that was gripped by famine just three years ago. With the support of the EU and the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), small-scale farmers have boosted the yields and quality of their maize grains, allowing them to sell 200 metric tons of high-quality maize to the UN’s World Food Programme (WFP), which purchased the grain with funds supplied by Austria. [download newsletter] 



UN emergency chiefs call for sustained funding for Somalia

Three United Nations emergency directors have called for more sustained funding for Somalia nearly three years after the worst famine hit the Horn of Africa nation. The emergency heads include Dominique Burgeon of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), David Kaatrud of the UN’s World Food Programme (WFP) and Ted Chaiban of the UN’s Children’s Fund (UNICEF), whose last leg of their Somali tour took them to Dollow in southern Somalia and the Horn of Africa. FAO, WFP and UNICEF share the same goal of strengthening resilience in Somalia and reaffirmed their commitment to play a key role for mobilizing change through resilience enhancement while prioritizing the most vulnerable in the region. [download newsletter]



PIRACY: FAO, Puntland President launch Somali fishermen database

The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and Puntland authorities launched the first database for Somali fishermen in decades aimed at improving management of fisheries in the Indian Ocean and the Gulf of Aden. In the last 12 months, over 3800 fishermen, over 50 percent of Puntland’s estimated 6,500 fishermen, have been registered using a biometrics system that uniquely identifies individuals by their fingerprints background and physical features. The project has been funded under the New York Anti-piracy Trust Fund. [download newsletter]  




Gulf Nations, Businesses Urged To Invest In Somalia

Countries and companies in the Gulf region have been urged to invest in the Horn of Africa nation and contribute to its economic recovery. Several dignitaries spoke at the opening of the Somali Producers' Conference & Exhibition 2014 (SOPEC), which opened in the United Arab Emirates commercial capital Dubai, on March 17 closing on March 19. [download newsletter]  





Over one million people in Somalia face acute food insecurity as food crisis worsens!

The gradual recovery and gains made since the end of the famine in 2012 are being lost as poor rains, conflict, trade disruptions and reduced humanitarian assistance led to a worsening of the food security situation across Somalia. Acute malnutrition increased in many parts of the country, particularly among children. The situation is likely to continue deteriorating further until the start of the Deyr rains in October. [download newsletter]  





FAO, Somali President commit to ending food crisis

The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) is appealing for US$443 million for the next three years to continue helping the population move forward following the famine in Somalia, which officially ended earlier this year. In 2011, a combination of years of conflict, drought and high food prices drove over 4 million people, half of Somalia’s population into acute food insecurity leaving tens of thousands dead, especially children under five. Although 2.12 million Somalis are still in crisis, the country is on the path to recovery. Working with national and international partners, FAO's aid strategy is to help farmers and herders rebuild long-term resilience."[download newsletter]



Protecting Somalia's mainstay

Somalia’s livestock sector dominates the country’s economy, creating about 65 percent of Somali’s job opportunities and generating about 40 percent of Somalia’s GDP and 80 percent of foreign currency earnings. Despite insecurity, political instability, disease and bans by some major importing Gulf countries over the past two decades, the number of animals and meat exported continues to grow. Currently Somalia exports over 4 million sheep and goats, cattle and camels per year. The private sector led export industry has helped to mitigate the impact of state collapse and war on the Somali people. Livestock makes a significant contribution towards increasing the resilience of poor Somali livelihoods.[download newsletter]



Cash schemes: Linking relief to recovery 

Somalia urgently requires interventions that respond to immediate needs whilst protecting assets and livelihoods for the future. In response to the 2011-2012 humanitarian crisis in Somalia, FAO rapidly scaled up its cash for work interventions through dispersing $36 million to provide immediate relief but also to enable recovery through ensuring agriculturalists could return to work as the drought retreated. Somalia is currently characterized by conflict, chronic poverty and food insecurity worsened by unpredictable and extreme climatic conditions. Many households have found that their traditional ways of coping have been undermined...[download newsletter]



Building drounght resilient agriculture

During the Somalia famine of 2011, the country’s agriculture sector took a devastating hit from prolonged drought that led to acute shortages of water for irrigation. Somalia’s rivers run dry starving fields of much needed water leading to food shortages and food price hikes. The cumulative impact of two decades of conflict also worsened a situation of protracted and complex emergency, which has eroded livelihoods and led to increased vulnerability to food insecurity. In the midst of one of the world’s worst humanitarian crises, hunger and malnutrition are some of the major causes of suffering for significant sections of the population. ...[download newsletter]



Fish for food security and better health

Since the start of the Somali civil war and the consequent collapse of the state in 1991, the country's 3,330 km (2,000 miles) of coastline — the longest in continental Africa —remains one of the most untapped resources. Domestic fresh fish consumption is limited to coastal areas mainly due to poor infrastructure, restricted access to fish, lack of familiarity with fish, seasonality of its supply and a predominant meat-eating tradition among the Somali communities. That is partly why Somalia has one of the lowest per capita fish consumption rates in the world. While traditional tastes and lack of consumer education programs to promote fish consumption have confined the market to certain coastal areas, meat shortages, experienced particularly...[download newsletter]



Information: Better natural resource management 

The long-term benefits of good management of water and land resources cannot be denied. For those tasked with this responsibility, information regarding the present state of these resources and the past, present and
future consequences of their use is critical in ensuring that decision makers are well-informed to achieve sustainable development of these resources. SWALIM (Somalia Water and Land Information Management) is an information management unit of FAO-Somalia serving and partnering with Somali administrations, non-governmental organisations, development agencies, academic institutions and UN organisations involved in assisting Somali communities...[download newsletter]