Mogadishu’s mayor, Yussuf Husseian Jimale.
MOGADISHU town says it is now ready for business, according to Mayor Yussuf Hussein Jimale. “The town has regained its beauty and investors are welcome.

“Actually, we have around 50 universities open now, and we have received lecturers from Kenya, Ethiopia, Uganda and other countries who come to help us,” Jimale said.

Banks are opening and new supermarkets are booming he said, adding that the Somali diaspora is also returning to invest in the country.

Yussuf said that the administration is there to help all those who are willing to invest in Somalia, especially in Mogadishu and the Banadir region, where Mogadishu town is located.

“We can abandon some taxes and help them get licences very quickly,” he said.

There has been a suggestion by the mayor that some taxes can be reduced, or simply erased, to create an attractive business climate.

In a country that has been occupied by insurgents and damaged by war, the mayor praised the fact that people are rebuilding the city.

Speaking through his interpreter, Mogadishu’s mayor said that hotels, roads, airports and sea ports have been rehabilitated, while piracy and insurgency appear to be on the wane.

At night, he said, joint patrols between Somali and the Amisom police component led by South African senior police officer Andy Pillay, protect new investors.

The government has emphasised that investments, especially in roads, fishing, hotels and tourism, farming and livestock, are welcome.

“We have long coastal spaces like South Africa. We need to have investors in hotels, fishing and the like”, said Jimale.

He acknowledged that bomb attacks were still being carried out and the drought was continuing.

Amisom acting spokesperson Major Robert Kamara has said that insurgents who have been expelled from most of the town are no longer able to retake it.

“They no longer confront us. They remain far from the towns and in small bushes. The only thing they do is to explode themselves or detonate explosives, and this also happens in other countries,” Kamara said.

Amisom, which is a 22 000-strong mission, has successfully driven insurgents from big towns and villages in Somalia.

It is aiming to retake the 15% of national territory that remains under al-Shabaab’s control.