Somalia - Future trends

Economic progress in Somalia depends on the reestablishment of peace, security, and stability. Otherwise there will be no significant investment, qualified and talented Somalis will continue to make their lives elsewhere, and the bulk of the population will continue in a wretched struggle for survival.

There are some international observers who argue that the relatively stable areas of Somaliland and Punt-land in the north should be allowed to secede and receive recognition from the international community so that they can receive aid and begin to make steady progress. There is great opposition to this move, however, in the south, and it seems that such acts will only be internationally acceptable if they are agreed to by all parties (as with the secession of Eritrea from Ethiopia). The priority of the new government will be to establish its authority in the south, and the autonomy of Somaliland and Puntland will be allowed to continue in the immediate future. But the future of Somaliland and Puntland in the new Somalia will have to be addressed at some stage.

Despite the creation of a new army, it will be immensely difficult for the new government of President Hassan to establish law and order in the face of hostility from the clan-based militias, who have declared that they do not recognize the new government. The militias cannot be crushed by force, and some place must be found for them in the new order in Somalia if peace is to be established. As of 2001 the country remains in a state of terrible disorder.

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