The Somalia IDDRSI Platform Coordination Mechanism aims to provide guidance and technical support in the design, planning, implementation and evaluation of components of the national drought resilience program. It is a multifaceted, multisectoral platform that requires the engagement and cooperation of various stakeholders, and, from a drought management perspective, needs the capacities of diverse ministries and national institutions. The Ministry of Livestock, Forestry and Range (MLFR) currently host the Platform Coordination unit. 

Structure of National IDDRSI Coordination Mechanism consists of National Steering Committee (NSC), Technical Committee and task teams. The structure and roles of the components of the coordination mechanism are shown in the following table 




Main Functions

National ministerial Steering Committee)

·         Chair: Minister, MLRF

·         Co-chair: Minster, Agriculture

·         Co-chair: Minster Fisheries & Marine Resources

·         Members: Ministers of the relevant federal ministries and Chairperson of Specialized Committee of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environment

·         Rapporteur: IDDRSI National Coordinator

·    Work as a technical coordination committee, comprising relevant stakeholders, NGOs and beneficiaries through pastoral associations and individuals.

·    The highest decision-making body for IDDRSI

·    Provide policy directives to IDDRSI implementation

·    Secure close communication and coordination among implementing institutions and stakeholders

·    Provide linkage to the Cabinets of Ministers and Parliament

·    Report to either the Prime Minister of Deputy Prime Minister

·    Meet biannually or as required

Technical Committee (TC)

·         Chair: DG, MLRF

·         Co-chair: DG, Ag.  DG, Fisheries & Marine Resources

·          National Coordinator

·         Members: Undersecretaries and DGs of the relevant ministries, Chairpersons of Commissions, Representatives from DPs, UN-Agencies, CSOs, Private Sector, Academia and Research Institutions

·    Supervise and monitor the progress of IDDRSI implementation and give feedback to the TC

·    Provide planning, technical and strategic guidance to the NSC

·    Secure close communication and coordination among implementing institutions

·    Review and submit budgets to NSC

·    Meet three time a year and as required

Task Team (TT)

Team leader: Appointed from MLRF

·         Co-team leader: Provided by MA

·         Members: Staff of the relevant institutions and experts from the DPs, UN-Agencies, CSOs...etc.


·    Undertake all activities and tasks necessary for IDDRSI implementation

·    Report the progress of IDDRSI implementation regularly to and obtain feedback from TC

·    Formulate and submit budgets to TC

·    Meet weekly and as required

State Focal Points (SFPs)

·         At least one staff members of state ministries of Livestock, Environment, Agriculture, and Fisheries, Water Resources…etc.


·    Bridge between national and state governments

·    Coordinate with government staff of each state

·    Create awareness of IDDRSI in each state

·    Provide information on the status of disaster resilience of each state

·    Facilitate data collection at the state level

·    Meet biannually at stakeholder meetings

Stakeholder Meetings

Representatives of national government institutions, state focal points, Representatives from DPs, UN-Agencies, CSOs, Private Sector, Academia and Research Institutions

·    Be consulted by the two TTs and provide inputs useful for IDDRSI implementation

·    Meetings are held biannually

At the Relevant Line Ministers level (Resilient Institutions)

Designated lead ministries will coordinate the technical stakeholders in implementation of IDDRSI Priority Intervention Areas (PIAs):

Table 2: IDDRSI Priority Intervention Area (PIAs) Lead Line Ministries


S/ No.


Lead Ministries


Livelihood Support and Basic Services

Ministry of Livestock (Chair) and Ministry of Agriculture  (Co-chair), Ministry of Fisheries & Marine Resources (Co-chair)


Market Access, Trade and Financial Services

Ministry of Commerce and Industry (Chair) and Ministry of Finance (Co-chair)


Environment and Natural Resources Management

Environment Office (Chair) and Ministry of Water Resources (Co-chair)


Disaster Risk Management, Preparedness and Effective Response

National Drought Disaster Management (Chair)


Research, Knowledge Management and Technology Transfer

Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation (Chair) and National Bureau of Statistics (Co-chair)


Conflict Prevention, Resolution and Peace Building

Ministry of Internal Affairs & Security (Chair)

Ministry of Livestock (Co-chair)


Coordination, Institutional Strengthening and Partnerships

Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International vestment (Chair)

Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation (Co-chair)







  • Somalia is located in the Horn of Africa. It is bordered by Ethiopia to the west, Djibouti to the northwest, the Gulf of Aden to the north, the Indian Ocean to the east, and Kenya to the southwest. Its population is estimated at 10.25 million persons (UNDO 2015).
  • Somalia is a pivotal 637,540 Km square land mass occupying most of the strategic coastline of the Horn of Africa, with 9% suitable for cultivation, 17% woodland, 45% for grazing and 29% for other uses. 
  • Somalia has the longest coastline on Africa's mainland and its terrain consists mainly of plateaus, plains and highlands.  Climatically, hot conditions prevail year-round, with periodic monsoon winds and irregular rainfall.

Recent Political Development

Over the last two decades, Somalia was torn by of political instability, civil strife and the absence of a functioning national state. Since the collapse of the government in 1991, the country has undergone a prolonged period of civil war and conflict that have resulted in governance difficulties and institutional breakdown. Most public infrastructure and institutions have deteriorated or destroyed. Livelihoods have been drastically eroded; people’s coping strategies disrupted resulting in large-scale migration and displacement.

However, with the establishment of permanent political institutions in 2012, Somalia entered into a new period where longer-term peace seems possible. Somalia has seen continued progress on the state formation process.

There has been much faster and consistent progress in regional state formations. Somalia has now completed the formation of its six regional member states, which are built through national dialogue and consensus. These are: Jubaland State of Somalia; Southwest State, Puntland; Hirshabelle; Somaliland and Federal Government of Somalia (FGS). Each of these states has its governing structure consisting of Parliament, President and executive council of ministries.

Somalia also continues to hold national elections in 2016. The National Leaders Forum (NLF) held a meeting in Mogadishu from 2 to 9 August endorsed a timetable for the elections, according to which voting for a new federal parliament will be held between 10 to 23 October, and the president will be elected by the new parliament on December 2016. 

Recent economic Development

  • Somalia’s economy has shown remarkable resilience despite over two decades of conflict and weak and ineffective central government. The GDP of Somalia was estimated at close to US$ 5.8 billion in 2010, with a per capita GDP of US$600. The economic conditions improved rapidly in 2012-13. The recovery was led by growth in livestock and fisheries, and a very active private sector resurgence of the services industry, notably communications, construction, and money transfer services, mainly associated with the return of diaspora Somalis (World Bank 2015).
  • The economic activity has further expanded in 2014 with real GDP rising by 3.7 percent. In nominal terms, the GDP increased by 6.6 percent to US$5.7 billion (World Bank 2015). The economic growth was estimated at about $6 billion in 2015, which is six times the pre-war period (1985-1990) average of US $1 billion (World Bank and IMF (April 2016).
  • The economy is highly dependent on imports with the share of exports to GDP being only 14%. Imports account for more than two thirds of GDP, creating a large trade deficit, mainly financed by remittances and international aid.
  • The aggregate imports of goods average about US$460 million per year (Central Bank of Somalia 2015). Exports of about US$270 million annually have surpassed pre-war aggregate export levels (before 1991).
  • Somalia has an informal economy largely based on livestock, remittance/money transfer companies, and telecommunications. The most significant industries are: (i) agriculture, livestock, and fisheries; (ii) information and communications; (iii) wholesale and retail trade; and (iv) financial services. 


  • Agriculture is the main sector with livestock accounting for about 65% of the GDP and employment of the workforce and more than 80% of export earnings. Livestock, hides, fish, charcoal, and bananas are Somalia's principal exports, while sugar, sorghum, corn, khat and machined goods are the principal imports. 
  • While Somalia is presently a food deficit country it has the potential to significantly increase crop production and reduce its dependence on food imports. However, there are number of challenges facing the sector include lack of security, lack of investment, limited technical skills and knowledge, poor water management and inefficient farming systems. In addition, Somalia lacks improved varieties suitable to the different agro-climatic conditions and inadequate pest management means that most crops are subject to numerous attacks and diseases and subsequent reduced yields.
  • Given the average rainfall of less than 500 mm and its variable pattern, rainfed crop production is practiced through out the country except in the coastal sandy plains and high limestone areas. Cereal yields in Somalia are extremely low. Recent evidences reveal that future agricultural strategies should be geared towards the selection, conservation and improvement of local varieties, introduction of new drought and pest resistant varieties and improvement in storage and reduction of post-harvest losses.
  • Significant opportunities for crop production exist under irrigation along the Shebelle and Juba valleys. Gravity or pump-irrigated agriculture is mostly found along the entire lengths of both the Juba and Shebelle rivers.
  • Gravity irrigation along the Shebelle is supported by considerable infrastructures including barrages, canals, river embankments and bridges. Most of the irrigation infrastructure was established to serve commercial farm production, especially for the production of export banana, sugarcane and rice production.
  • Riverine irrigated cropping is the most productive system that is now practiced in large majority by smallholders. Crops grown under irrigated agriculture are maize, sesame and rice but also include fruit trees, such as mango, papaya, lime and bananas.
  • Oasis Farming is practiced in Somaliland and Puntland and traditionally occurs in toggas and springs which provide water for the production of date palms, papaya, citrus and vegetables. 

Role of Private Sector in the Economy

Throughout the years of conflict and fragility, Somalia’s private sector helped maintain economic activity. The absence of restrictive government policies, state provision, regulation, and control encouraged private sector competition and entrepreneurship and a vibrant private sector has moved in to establish basic markets such as telecommunication, money transfers, retail trading, hotels, and newspapers.

Telecommunication companies now provide wireless services in most major cities and offer the cheapest local and international call rates on the continent.  In the absence of a strong formal banking sector, money transfer/remittance services have sprouted throughout the country, handling up to $1.6 billion in remittances annually. Micro entrepreneurs provide distilled water and electricity to towns at affordable prices. The sector offers retail outlets selling everything from cosmetics and books to computer systems. Air, sea and land transportation are also all in private hands. There is active real estate development and construction in the area. 


Despite the progress made, Somalia still faces a daunting development challenge to overcome the legacy of two decades of sustained conflict and fragility.  Among the main challenges, we have:

  • Absence of an active and strong central government,
  • Civil disputes and war that further aggravated the problem of poverty in Somalia. 
  • Natural calamities like floods and droughts. 
  • Somalia's small industrial sector, based on the processing of agricultural products, has largely been destroyed 
  • Somalia’s vibrant private sector may soon reach the limits of its potential if further reforms to the enabling environment, particularly to security and access to finance, are not pursued. 
  • Somalia's government lacks the ability to collect domestic revenue, and arrears to the IMF have continued to grow. 
  • Somalia faces high levels of poverty and inequality, a youth bulge, high unemployment, and large infrastructure gaps. 
  • Somalia‘s demographic profile shows a pronounced youth bulge. According to the High Frequency Survey results, Somalia has a very young population. Approximately 50% of the population is below the age 15 years. This is major source of conflict in Somalia, where two-thirds of youth are unemployed. This is among the factors fueling Al-Shaba’s appeal. 
  • Though weakened, Al Shabaab retains significant terrorist capacity and has focused on asymmetric attacks targeting government and international targets. Southern Somalia is still experiencing active conflict. Puntland has remained relatively peaceful, although Al-Shabaab infiltration into Puntland’s mountainous areas has been growing.
  • The socio-economic situation of the country is very poor. Access to an improved water source and sanitation remains below the Sub-Saharan average. Literacy rates are also low, especially among women 15-24.
  • Somalia is one of the poorest countries in the world. Its per capita Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is estimated at about US$ 435, making Somalia the 5th poorest country in the world (World Bank 2015). The poverty cuts across sectors, location, group and gender.
  • Malnutrition remains high in many regions of the country and nutrition surveys conducted from October to December 2015 by the FAO indicate that over 300,000 children under the age of five are acutely malnourished.
  • Conflict and limited access to health care are responsible for high level of poverty and very weak health outcomes. High mortality rates are driven by high death rates in the early stages of life. 
  • Inequitable access to the means of production (land and capital), the skewed distribution of wealth, reduced access to economic goods and services and remunerative employment are all causes of poverty.
  • Somalia is in debt distress, its external debt burden is unsustainable, debt burden indicators meet the threshold for Heavily-Indebted-Poor-Countries-Initiative (HIPIC) eligibility and Somalia’s external debt continues to accumulate in arrears.

New National Development Plan

To address the developmental challenges, the current Somali government developed a National Development Plan (NDP) that covers the fiscal period 2017 to 2019. It is the first NDP developed by the Somali government since 1986. The NDP builds on the foundations laid by the New Deal Compact for Somalia, which articulated national priorities between 2014-2016. 

The NDP stipulates the Somalia‘s short to medium term strategic direction, development priorities and proposed implementation mechanisms including the use of development aid. The Plan focuses on poverty reduction and its implementation will create an environment necessary for the achievement of sustainable development in Somalia. The NDP aims to achieve the following results: 

  1. Secure environment, more open politics and reconciliation
  2. Reduced abject poverty
  3. More resilient communities that can withstand to shocks
  4. Vibrant productive sector, with particular focus on agriculture, livestock and fishing
  5. Increased availability and accessibility of basic social services, especially health, safe drinking water and education
  6. Improved health outcomes
and control of diseases;
  7. Increased employment opportunities 
  8. Empowerment of the federal member states to deliver services and economic 
opportunities to the citizens of Somalia in a secure environment.


  • Somalia features five main ecosystem types: desert and semi-desert (38%), grass and shrubs (36%), interrupted woods (14%), crop and settlements (1%), and the 3,333 km coastline from the Gulf of Aden in the North to the Indian Ocean southwards (11%) bordering Kenya.
  • The arid and semiarid lands (ASALs) cover over 80% of the landmass and are predominantly inhabited by pastoral and agro-pastoral communities who mostly depend on livestock production. The ASALs are characterized by persistent water scarcity, frequent drought, high climatic variability, and various forms of land degradation, including desertification and loss of biodiversity. The threat of the climate change and shifting weather patterns is expected to bring more frequent and longer droughts to the Horn of  Africa region, its agricultural productivity will further decrease putting strain on local food markets, further heightening the food insecurity situation especially in the poverty-stricken and marginal areas.
  • The production systems in ASALs include diverse mix of food, and fodder crops; rangeland and pasture species; vegetables, fruit and fuel-wood trees. 
  • Somalia is dominated by two livelihood systems, pastoralism and agro-pastoralism. A small proportion of the riverine population along the Juba and the Shebelle rivers depends on settled agriculture. Pastoralists, who are dependent upon livestock for their livelihood, make up a large portion of the population. There are about fourteen pastoralist livelihood zones in Somalia, which are located mainly in the arid regions in the central and northern parts of the country. 
  • Pastoralist and agr-pastorlist in the Great Horn of Africa/ Somalia are highly exposed to shocks since their livelihoods depend on an increasingly deteriorated natural resource base and on volatile climatic and market conditions.
  • They are also vulnerable to risks/ shocks because they have a limited asset base to fall back on when shocks strike, limited capacity and means to manage risks, and weaker institutional, infrastructural and service networks. 
  • Given their exposure and vulnerability to shocks, the decisions of pastoralist and agr-pastorlist on how to allocate and use resources such as land and labor generally reflect the need to reduce exposure or vulnerability to shocks. Whether or not successful, such strategies can undermine the ability of pastoralist to move out of poverty by preventing or discouraging them from taking the risks involved in pursuing new opportunities
  • The combination of exposure and vulnerability to risks/shocks can make Pastoralist and agr-pastorlist poor, keep them poor, or prevent them from moving out of poverty. 
  • When shocks occur, pastoralist and agr-pastorlist use a number of coping approaches, which often involve selling assets and leaving households and communities more vulnerable to future shocks.

Somalia is a drought prone country due to its geographical location and Pastoralist and agropastrolist communities suffer severe droughts and flooding that results in a pervasive food and nutrition insecurity, land loss and degradation, and outbreaks of human and livestock disease or crop pests. Historically, severe droughts have occurred in Somalia since 1969, 1974, 1987, 1988, 2000, 20001, 2004, 2008 ,2011 and 2016  as shown in Table 3. These major droughts have adversely affected the lives and livelihood of the Somalis specifically rural communities.