Turkey helps Somali revive its economy
Somali is undergoing economic resurrection owing to its partnership with Turkey. The partnership was founded back in 2011 when the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan first visited Somali. At a time when Somali was undergoing political and humanitarian challenges, international communities choose to ignore its calls for help. Turkey is the only country that headed to their call and has ever since stood by it. This partnership has yielded Mogadishu port expansion, construction of hospitals and schools, providing aid and awarding scholarships to students from Somali. Turkey has been a strategic partner to Somali in helping them move past the effects terrorists’ attacks, violent political seasons and famine.
In 2011, Somali suffered a great widespread famine resulting from late rains which claimed more than 260,000 Arabs. While other international communities ignored their plight; Turkey came to their aid saving millions of people from the imminent threat of death from malnutrition. This was achieved through a nationwide campaign driven by “bridge of charity” foundation that raised approximately $300 million.
A significant increase in efforts by Turkey in their commitment to helping was noted when Recep, then Turkey Prime Minister visited Somali in 2011. Afterward, 2011 was branded “year of Turkish benevolence” by the Somali people following the immense aid received from Turkey. Muhammed Sheik Taher from Somali confirmed that indeed the humanitarian intervention by Turkey had aided in rescuing millions of people facing famine. Taher expressed that the visit by Recep would always be remembered as a historic event that would forever change Somali. The partnership between the two countries was founded on the commonality of Muslim community. President Erdogan has since visited Somali two more times in 2015 and 2016.
The coming of Albayrak Group to Somali has resulted in significance boost the country’s economy and achievement of some political stability. The company is credited with increased income generated monthly by Mogadishu Port and International Mogadishu Airport which were operated by companies from Turkey. Improved trade activities by air and sea are huge major sources of income for the government of Somali. Consequently, when Turkish companies undertook maintenance of the International Airport of Mogadishu many employment opportunities were created for the Somalis adding to economic growth. Albayrak Holding employed Somalis enabling merchants in market diversification even penetrating the Turkish space. This is a major development from the common Abu Dhabi and China markets.
Among efforts by the Turkish government to help Somali, they have set up camps charged with daily food distribution to refugees who migrated from areas in Somali with recurrent drought cases. Turkish aid is not only nutrition based but also health based. Turkey has constructed state of the art health facilities in Somali providing major surgical services easing the cost incurred from traveling abroad for such services in the past.
Turkey has also set a military training camp in Somali, South of Mogadishu giving hope to Somalis in the event of terror attacks whilst building its own army’s capabilities.