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Somaliland: Open for business [Somalia]

The self-declared independent state in the north-west corner of conflict-ridden Somalia has been an oasis of calm, and it is now seeking foreign investment...[During] last week's London conference on Somalia..."Given the meagre resources available to the government from its budget and the absence of credit facilities, the bulk of the investment required for the national development plan is expected to come from external sources," says a...[national development] plan...Somaliland's minister of planning, Dr Saad Shire, provided an overview of Somaliland's economic objectives...[and] trumpeted Somaliland as ideally located for access to east African markets, particularly Ethiopia, markets in the Middle East and even Asia – and what must be one of the world's most favourable regimes for foreign investors. Foreign direct investors will pay no tax for three years...there will be full compensation for any expropriations, which would be done only in the "public interest"...[and there] will also be no minimum wage.