Thursday February 2, 2023
The first Minister of the Environment and Climate Change of the Federal Republic of Somalia Khadija Mohamed Almakhzoumi visits Finland on 31 January–3 February 2023. The visit is on the invitation of the Finnish Minister of the Environment and Climate Change Maria Ohisalo. The purpose of the visit is to support the new ministry in starting its work.
In Finland, the Somali Minister of the Environment and Climate Khadija Mohamed Almakhzoumi will meet the Finnish Minister of the Environment and Climate Change Maria Ohisalo. During her four-day visit Almakhzoumi will learn about climate work in Finland, including the role of forests in climate policy, the new Climate Act and its preparation process, and how climate perspectives are being mainstreamed in different policy sectors. The Minister and the delegation from the Somali Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change will visit the Finnish Nature Centre Haltia, Finnish Environment Institute, Finnish Meteorological Institute and Parliament, and meet representatives of the Agenda 2030 Youth Group, Metsähallitus and Finnfund.
The topics to be discussed between Ministers Ohisalo and Almakhzoumi include closer cooperation between Finland and Somalia in climate policy. Somalia is hard hit by drought and the food crisis, and the whole the Horn of Africa is extremely vulnerable to the consequences of climate change. As much as 80% of the Somali territory suffers from drought and the UN estimates that up to 90% of the country could become uninhabitable by 2030 due to climate change.
“Somalia is paying an unreasonably high price for the consequences of the climate crisis the country is not guilty of. Somalia and Finland share a long history and I consider it very important that we will support Somalia in building a climate resilient society and in strengthening their governance capacity. The new position of Minister of the Environment and Climate Change is an important step in this process,” Minister Ohisalo says.
Somalia has been one of Finland’s partner countries for development cooperation since the 1980s. In 2021–2024, Finland’s bilateral cooperation in Somalia will focus on statebuilding and women’s sexual and reproductive health and rights. The financial frame for 2021–2024 will be approximately EUR 54 million.
Almakhzoumi will also meet the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Finland Pekka Haavisto.