no permanent national government; transitional, parliamentary federal government
2.815% (2010 est.)
Britain withdrew from British Somaliland in 1960 to allow its protectorate to join with Italian Somaliland and form the new nation of Somalia. In 1969, a coup headed by Mohamed SIAD Barre ushered in an authoritarian socialist rule that managed to impose a degree of stability in the country for more than two decades. After the regime's collapse early in 1991, Somalia descended into turmoil, factional fighting, and anarchy. In May 1991, northern clans declared an independent Republic of Somaliland that now includes the administrative regions of Awdal, Woqooyi Galbeed, Togdheer, Sanaag, and Sool. Although not recognized by any government, this entity has maintained a stable existence and continues efforts to establish a constitutional democracy, including holding municipal, parliamentary, and presidential elections. The regions of Bari, Nugaal, and northern Mudug comprise a neighboring semi-autonomous state of Puntland, which has been self-governing since 1998 but does not aim at independence; it has also made strides toward reconstructing a legitimate, representative government but has suffered some civil strife. Puntland disputes its border with Somaliland as it also claims portions of eastern Sool and Sanaag. Beginning in 1993, a two-year UN humanitarian effort (primarily in the south) was able to alleviate famine conditions, but when the UN withdrew in 1995, having suffered significant casualties, order still had not been restored. A two-year peace process, led by the Government of Kenya under the auspices of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), concluded in October 2004 with the election of Abdullahi YUSUF Ahmed as President of the Transitional Federal Government (TFG) of Somalia and the formation of an interim government, known as the Somalia Transitional Federal Institutions (TFIs). The TFIs included a 275-member parliamentary body, known as the Transitional Federal Assembly (TFA). President YUSUF resigned late in 2008 while United Nations-sponsored talks between the TFG and the opposition Alliance for the Re-Liberation of Somalia (ARS) were underway in Djibouti. In January 2009, following the creation of a TFG-ARS unity government, Ethiopian military forces, which had entered Somalia in December 2006 to support the TFG in the face of advances by the opposition Islamic Courts Union (ICU), withdrew from the country. The TFA was increased to 550 seats with the addition of 200 ARS and 75 civil society members of parliament. The expanded parliament elected Sheikh SHARIF Sheikh Ahmed, the former CIC and ARS chairman as president on 31 January 2009, in Djibouti. Subsequently, President SHARIF appointed Omar Abdirashid ali SHARMARKE, son of a former president of Somalia, as prime minister on 13 February 2009. The TFIs are based on the Transitional Federal Charter (TFC), which outlines a five-year mandate leading to the establishment of a new Somali constitution and a transition to a representative government following national elections. However, in January 2009 the TFA amended the TFC to extend TFG's mandate until 2011. While its institutions remain weak, the TFG continues to reach out to Somali stakeholders and to work with international donors to help build the governance capacity of the TFIs and to work toward national elections in 2011.
- Currency: Somali shilling (ISO code: SOS)
- Central bank discount rate: NA% (31 December 2008)
- Commercial banks lending rate: NA%
- Stock of money (M1): 
- Quasi money (with M1 makes M2): 
|Statistic / Year||1999||2000||2001||2002||2003||2004||2005||2006||2007||2008|
|Govt. debt (% of GDP)|
|Govt. revenue (% of GDP)|
|Govt. expenses (% of GDP)|
|Debt to revenue (years)|
Note: statistical data was rounded. Different sources may use different methodologies for their estimates. Debt to revenue is calculated by dividing the two variables from their original ('unrounded') values. It represents how long it would a government take to repay its entire debt if it used its whole revenue for this purpose.
- CIA - The World Factbook. "Somalia", from The World Factbook. Referenced 2010-10-04.
- Transparency International. "Somalia", Corruption Perceptions Index 2009. A lower ranking is better; but please note that the numbers cannot be compared between countries or years due to different methodology. Referenced 2010-10-04.
- World Bank. "Somalia: GDP", from World Bank Data. Referenced 2010-10-04.
- World Bank. "Somalia: government debt", from World Bank Data. Referenced 2010-10-04.
- World Bank. "Somalia: government revenue", from World Bank Data. Referenced 2010-10-04.
- World Bank. "Somalia: government expenses", from World Bank Data. Referenced 2010-10-04.
- General resources:
- About the current status of the Somali territories:
- Telecoms thriving in lawless Somalia by Joseph Winter, November 2004
- Places That Don't Exist: Somaliland (video Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, program page with transcript) BBC, May 2005
- But Wouldn't Warlords Take Over? by Robert P. Murphy, July 2005
- Stateless in Somalia, and Loving It by Yumi Kim, February 2006
- Are the Salad Days for Somalia Over? by Llewellyn H. Rockwell Jr., June 2006
- New Somali Government Faces the Age-Old Problem of Clans by Jeffrey Gettleman, January 2007
- The Rule of Law without the State by Spencer Heath MacCallum, September 2007
- The Law of the Somalis: A Stable Foundation for Economic Development in the Horn of Africa (pdf), by Michael van Notten, 2007
- Anarchy and Haiti by Robert P. Murphy, January 2010, some resources on Somalia
- Better Off Stateless: Somalia Before and After Government Collapse (pdf), by Peter T. Leeson
- Anarchy and Invention: How Does Somalia’s Private Sector Cope without Government? (pdf) by Tatiana Nenova and Tim Harford, November 2004
- Somali “Anarchy” Is More Orderly than Somali Government by Benjamin Powell, December 2006
- Somalia After State Collapse: Chaos or Improvement? (study, with pdf) by Benjamin Powell, Ryan Ford, Alex Nowrasteh, November 2006
- Stateless in Somalia (video), Ben Powell, July 2009
- Somalia and Anarchy by Jim Davidson, 2001
- Somalia: 20 years of anarchy by Damian Zane, January 2011
- Anarchy in Somalia by Robert P. Murphy, June 2011
- A ray of hope, The Economist, Feb 2012
- Failures of the State Failure Debate: Evidence from the Somali Territories by Tobias Hagmann and Markus V. Hoehne, 2009
- Streetlights bring normality to Mogadishu by Andrew Harding, May 2013, see also video
- "Competing Currencies in Somalia" by Finbar Feehan-Fitzgerald, August 2013
- Making Somalia Work by Conor Seyle, December 10, 2015