In the Horn of Africa, Switzerland focuses on governance, food security, health, and migration.  It supports projects with a regional approach in Somalia, south-eastern Ethiopia and north-eastern Kenya.

The Horn of Africa has been at the centre of global attention for several decades because of protracted armed conflict, severe food crises and large scale displacement.. .  Local conflicts over access to and share of natural resources are on the increase and the region has the world’s highest maternal and child mortality rates.  This difficult context forces people to migrate and leads to internally displaced persons and refugees. Other the other hand, the region shows positives changes: On the political front, significant progress has been achieved in Somalia since 2012, when a new government took office, creating a new outlook for the entire region.

The current Swiss cooperation strategy Horn of Africa builds on the results that have been achieved in the region and emphasises its commitment in fragile contexts.

Switzerland supports the provision of services and promotes the restoration of trust in state institutions. It also seeks to address the long-term causes of conflict and poverty  and thus promotes conflict transformation and regional integration. The dynamic of the conflicts in Somalia as well as conflicts over power and resources in the region take centre-stage. As part of these efforts, Switzerland has also established since July 2014 a joint partnership with the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), the only regional organisation in the Horn of Africa (based in Djibouti).

Regional Cooperation Strategy 2013-2016 Horn of Africa

Switzerland’s Regional Cooperation Strategy 2013–2016 for the Horn of Africa is a development framework that brings together the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), the Human Security Division of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, and the Secretariat for Migration. The total budget is 140.05 million Swiss francs (94 % from SDC). The strategy covers Somalia, Southern Ethiopia and North/Northeastern Kenya. In case of humanitarian emergency and provided conditions of engagement are met, the strategy also includes Eritrea and Djibouti.  Switzerland’s regional strategy focuses on four sectors: food security, governance, health and migration/protection.

Why: hypothesis of change for the region

Switzerland’s interests and overall hypothesis of change is that people in the region gradually gain confidence in, and benefit from, their State institutions and services. Despite temporary setbacks they are increasingly able to share and manage resources peacefully and take advantage of economic opportunities. Switzerland promotes the transformation of conflicts and regional connectivity by addressing the long-term drivers of conflict and poverty which lie at the core of the fragility in the Horn of Africa, particularly the Somali conflict dynamics and conflicts concerning power and resource sharing.

SDC Cooperation Strategy Horn of Africa 2018-2021 (PDF, 1.5 MB, English)