By Abdiwali Gooni
Participants from institutional investors, sovereign wealth, equity, private sector CEOs, policymakers, donors, billionaires, from across the continent congregated in Garowe, Puntland to attend the first ever transaction-based Forum on the Federal Republic of Somalia- Puntland Investment Forum – from September 15 to 17, 2019.
There were tangible outcomes. The PIF announced that 10 deals worth $464 million have secured investment interests. The forum also provided opportunities for entrepreneurs in the early “structuring” phase of business development to practice pitching their projects in an open marketplace. Networking among individuals from the public and private sectors was at a premium.
President of Puntland Dr. Said Abdullahi Deni closed the Puntland Investment Summit which was running for the last 3 days.
“It is truly an honor for Government of Puntland and the people of Puntland to hold such a conference timely manner and to come up with the right thing to do, I am very grateful to all who have worked and for those who is responsible for organizing the conference and all government agencies working with the conference and the security forces, not only our ambition was this conference an investment but also to change the culture and character of the Somali people, especially in Puntland to show that people work together.” Said President Said Deni.
“Over the last 60 years, the Somali government has been misinformed young people learning to work for the government that is driven by his political views at birth, but I tell you this is not true, I started a business at age 10 and worked in most business, not the same, keep in mind that you have a goal of ensuring that you work for the government and make your own business, it is a good idea to create a positive attitude,” Adde President Deni.
Since, Puntland is well positioned along the trade route of the world and can give access to landlocked countries in Africa. The emerging and large economy countries are looking for resources to develop their economies and productions, Puntland if governed right, can become achieve long-term growth and sustainable development.
Puntland Investment Forum was a most welcomed initiative. To ensure its ongoing relevance, the Puntland state should provide regular progress updates on deals closed at the forum and investments that have moved from the boardroom stage to implementation. PIF and its partners should also continue working together to ensure the agreements and letters of interests agreed are acted upon in the immediate future.
The next edition of the Puntland Investment Forum is scheduled for September 2020 in Bosaso.
Abdiwali Gooni is a Senior Journalist | Security analyst | Columnist | Blogger | Founder of Somali Youth Federation ( SYF) based in Bosaso, Master of Arts in Security & Criminology studies at Mount Kenya University.
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