Somalia Facts

Somalia, State of Eastern Africa; 638,000 km2, 15 million residents (2019).Somalia, located on the Horn of Africa, borders on the west to Ethiopia and Kenya and on the northwest to Djibouti and has a coast to the Indian Ocean to the east. In 1991, the northwestern parts declared themselves independent under the name Somaliland, but the republic has not been recognized diplomatically. The capital is Mogadishu (1.7 million residents, 2015).

Somalia Country Flag

Country facts

  • Jamhuriyadda Dimuqraadiqa ee Soomaaliya / Republic of Somalia
  • Country abbreviation: SO
  • Area: 638 000 km2
  • Population (2019): 15 million residents
  • Capital: Mogadishu
  • Main language: Somali
  • State: Republic
  • Head of State: Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed (President)
  • Head of Government: Hassan Ali Kheyre
  • Per capita GDP (2018): US $ 315
  • GNI per capita: no data available
  • Currency unit: 1 Somali shilling = 100 cents
  • Currency code: SOS
  • Country number (telephony): 252
  • Internet Domain Name: so
  • Time difference compared to Sweden: +2
  • National Day: July 1 (Founding State, 1960)


  • Land use: forest (25%), agricultural land (2%), other (73%)
  • Highest mountain: Surud Ad (2,416 m above sea level)


  • Population density (2019): 24 residents per km2
  • Natural population growth (2019): 3.2%; birth rate 42 ‰, death rate 11 ‰
  • Age structure (2019): 0-14 years (47%), 15-64 (50%), 65- (3%)
  • Life expectancy (2019): men 55 years, women 58 years
  • Infant mortality (2019): 70 per 1,000 live births
  • Population forecast 2050: 35 million residents
  • HDI: no data available
  • Urbanization rate (2019): 45%
  • Most populous city (2015): Mogadishu (1.76 million residents)


  • Industry’s contribution to GDP (2013): agriculture (60%), industry (7%), service (33%)
  • Exports (2014): US $ 819 million
  • Main export products: live cattle, bananas
  • Main exporting countries: United Arab Emirates, Yemen, Oman
  • Imports (2014): US $ 3 482 million
  • Main import products: manufacturing, oil products, foodstuffs
  • Main importing countries: Djibouti, India. China
  • Railway network: nothing in operation

Southern Somalia mainly consists of a coastal plain, while the country in the north forms part of the Ethiopian highlands. Somalia has a tropical desert climate, most pronounced in the northern part, while the southern coastal strip is reached by more humid air masses.

No other country has been affected by such a collapse as Somalia in modern times, and the country has ceased to exist as a state for periods of time. In 2004-12 Somalia was ruled by a transitional government. In 2012, Parliament appointed a president to govern the country until free elections are held in 2016. However, the country’s official government only has control over a smaller part of the country; much of southern and central Somalia is ruled by the militant Islamist group al-Shabab.

After the state collapse in 1991, all normal economic activities have been impossible. A provisional fuel distribution system from northern Somalia has operated under a strong armed private surveillance. For many years, shipbuilding off the coast of Somalia has been a major problem, but during the 2010s efforts from, among others, The EU has contributed to a reduction in the number of cuts. Exports of live cattle and bananas have increased during periods, but it is also under the control of various armed groups. In the quieter northern parts of the country, an informal civil economy is flourishing, where small-scale businesses are started and run.

Somalia Map

Somalia Map

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