Until recently the dusty streets of Somaliland’s capital city of Hargeisa were without a diplomatic neighbourhood. The semi-autonomous country, which unilaterally declared independence from Somalia in 1991, has struggled to gain recognition from the international community as a sovereign state.
However, recent bilateral developments have emboldened Somaliland’s dreams of independence and boosted hopes of a windfall of trade and investment opportunities.
Kenya, the UAE and Taiwan have each expanded their diplomatic presence in Somaliland over the last few months, adding to consulates from Djibouti, Ethiopia and Turkey. The UK and Denmark also have liaison offices, while Egypt is in the process of establishing a representative office and a proposed military base.