World Bank review development progress in Somalia

Published: March 30, 2023

The World Bank Country team, in collaboration with the Ministry of Finance of the Federal Government of Somalia (FGS), hosted the Country Portfolio Performance Review (CPPR) over two days with fruitful discussions between the Bank and government officials from FGS and Federal Member State (FMS) including the project implementation units (PIUs).

The meeting came at an opportune time as the country moves toward the Highly Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) Completion Point. The objectives of the CPPR were to assess challenges to project implementation and how to find ways to accelerate implementation of impactful development projects to deliver critical services to the Somali people.

The hybrid event took place at The Hangar, at the Mogadishu airport, and was attended by the host Dr. Elmi Nur, Minister of Finance for Somalia, Mohamud Abdirahman Sheikh Farah (Beene Beene), Minister for Planning, Investment and Economic Development, Bihi Egeh, Minister of Labor and Social Affairs, Jamal Takhal Abbas, Minister of Energy and Water Resources, and Ali Haji Adan, Minister for Health & Social Care. They all appreciated the progress made and noted that the meeting was an excellent opportunity to reflect on ongoing programs and build on successes leading into the upcoming Country Partnership Framework.

“We are grateful to the Bank, which is an important supporter of our national development,” said Dr. Elmi Nur, Minister of Finance for Somalia. “We are on track to further enhance the operational impacts of all projects and will use the lessons learned over time to improve current and future programs.”

Over the next few months, the World Bank will be working closely with the government and the International Monetary Fund to support Somalia reach the HIPC completion point which once achieved, will be a major milestone for Somalia that will help open up new financing opportunities for the country.

“We have come a long way together and important development results have been achieved,” said Keith Hansen, World Bank Country Director for Somalia, Kenya, Rwanda, and Uganda, in his online address to the participants. “And we need to continue working together to ensure a speedy implementation.”

The continued prudent implementation of the existing World Bank portfolio will help create a track record with other financiers and new donor partners to use country systems. The PIUs working on Bank projects also shared the lessons learned and had candid deliberations on improving processes to strengthen proper procurement, financial management, and implementation of environmental and social safeguards. The meeting came up with an action plan outlining clear and time-bound recommendations to be implemented.

“It is heartening to note that the country portfolio is performing well with no outstanding issues,” said Kristina Svensson, World Bank Country Manager for Somalia. “We are eager to ensure this remains so, especially since there have been many lessons learned from the last ten years of Bank programs in Somalia. We believe that the action plan agreed upon will address the challenges effectively.”