MOGADISHU, Somalia – Just over a month before his term expires, President Farmajo signed the 2021 budget that is expected to carry out operations in government even as he braces for another epic battle that would see him face off against some of his eternal enemies.
The government has budgeted for 2021 at $ 670 million, an increase of $ 194 million. Last year’s budget was $ 476 million and it was largely funded by outside creditors, some of whom are traditional friends of Somalia.
The Somali government has seen the fortunes of revenue decline dramatically with the Hiraan Institute projecting that the militant group of Al-Shabaab has raised more than the government can achieve. It is estimated that activists raise more than the government.
Over the years, however, budget estimates have increased due to growing demand from the country’s impoverished population and the need to expand infrastructure. In addition, the country is in the process of repairing a number of mega roads, ports and even the Department of Agriculture.
The President congratulated the parliamentarians for their commitment to fulfill their constitutional obligations and thanked them for approving the new budget. Farmajo is generally popular in the lower house, whose term has also expired.
The President also thanked the Ministry of Finance and Somali financial experts for preparing and formulating a budget that reflects the needs of the Somali people. In addition to external creditors, the country is striving to increase its domestic revenues.
President Farmajo instructed the government to focus on accelerating social services, increasing employment opportunities for young people and paying salaries to government employees and the armed forces.