Somalia’s 2017-2019 National Development Plan (NDP) emphasizes the importance of having a strong social protection system in place to assist its people in meeting basic needs. After years of conflict and constant shocks, the Federal Government of Somalia (FGS) has developed social protection policies and programmes which provide more sustainable support, that helps the poor and vulnerable groups access health care, education and other social services and build resilience to shocks.

Despite the presence of various Social Protection and humanitarian programmes that contribute to the overall reduction in poverty, it is estimated that approximately 70 per cent of the population still live below the poverty line. Somalia continues to make progress in strengthening Social Protection legal frameworks, capacities, systems and the requisite delivery mechanisms. In particular, the country has made significant progress with regard to the development and rollout of a National Social Protection Policy, the establishment of a national safety net programme, and the adoption of a national unified social registry. Notably, the FGS is in the process of initiating a public sector pension scheme, a livestock insurance scheme, and a youth-targeted productive safety net. In addition, the government demonstrates a commitment to providing sustained multi-year financing – initially through donors, and increasingly from the FGS national budget.

Furthermore, the FGS has begun the transition to a national social protection system, intended to reduce the country’s dependence on emergency aid programmes – that provide short-term solutions to long-term challenges. Such transition becomes the basis for technical support that propagates an inclusive, equitable, adaptive, integrated, contextually relevant, and sustainable social protection system, which Somalia Social Protection Policy (SSPP) accomplishes by relying on eight principles. As a development think tank, we are keen to contribute to the strengthening of the National SP frameworks for implementation and to leverage evidence useful for the design and delivery of SP programmes.