Canada established diplomatic relations with Somalia in 1968.
Diplomatic relations with Somalia were in abeyance from the collapse of the Somali government in 1991. Following the establishment of the Federal Government of Somalia in 2012, Minister Baird announced the re-establishment of diplomatic relations in May 2013.
On June 15, 2014, Canada’s then Ambassador-designate to Somalia, David Angell, presented his Letters of Credence to Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud. This makes him the first accredited Canadian Ambassador to Somalia in 24 years. Ambassador Angell works from the Canadian High Commission in Nairobi, Kenya, with periodic travel to Somalia.
Canada continues to work with the international community in efforts to stabilize Somalia through support to the political process, peacebuilding and humanitarian assistance.
Canada hosts one of the largest Somali diaspora communities in the world, and it is the most prominent diaspora group from Africa in Canada. Many Somali-Canadians have strong links to Somalia and some occupy senior positions in federal and regional governments in Somalia.
Canada is concerned by the extremely fragile humanitarian situation in Somalia and supports international efforts to meet the basic needs of the millions of Somalis facing hunger, disease, displacement, physical insecurity, and loss of livelihoods as a result of both chronic natural disasters (drought, flooding) and more than two decades of political instability and conflict. Since December 2010, Canada has provided over $135 million, including $37.75 million in 2013, to support the humanitarian operations of UN agencies and non-government organizations working in Somalia or supporting Somali refugees in Kenya, Ethiopia, and Djibouti. Canada’s humanitarian assistance is helping to provide life-saving relief - including food, water and sanitation, medical and nutritional support, emergency shelter, and protection - to Somalia’s most vulnerable people.
Canada has minimal trade relations with Somalia due to the continuing conflict and high costs of doing business. In 2013, two-way merchandise trade stood at $900 000. Canada’s top exports to Somalia in 2013 consisted of machinery and vehicles. Canada’s imports from Somalia in 2013 were negligible.
The Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade & Development advises against all travel in Somalia. There is no resident Canadian government office in Somalia, and the Government of Canada cannot provide consular assistance to Canadian citizens in distress in Somalia.
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