The Republic of Djibouti passes a law on the social and solidarity economy (SSE)

The new law was adopted to promote the development of SSE organizations as a means of extending social protection and eradicating poverty in Djibouti.

News | 10 December 2019
In June 2019, the National Assembly of the Republic of Djibouti adopted two bills proposed by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Solidarities: A law promulgating the National Strategy for Social Protection (SNPS) 2018-2022; and another law on the social and solidarity economy (SSE).

In line with the “Vision 2035” of the President Mr. Ismaïl Omar Guelleh, both bills are concomitantly proposed in order to jointly accelerate poverty eradication through the promotion of basic human rights, the development of self-reliance and the strengthening of human capital.

The SNPS 2018-2022 has four strategic priorities: 1) Right to food security for households below the national poverty line; 2) Income guarantee for children living in households in extreme poverty; 3) Income guarantee for the elderly without family support and persons with disabilities; and 4) Income support for those who are not able to work due to life accidents. The law on the SNPS brings together different social protection schemes under one framework for the first time in the country. The government will work with the ILO to forecast the pace of national development and examine available resources for the implementation.

In Djibouti, the SSE is recognized as the third pillar of the economy alongside the public and private sectors, for its role in creating job and income opportunities particularly in rural areas, formalizing the informal economy and strengthening self-reliance and social solidarity. It is in this recognition that the SNPS includes the development of the SSE as a socio-economic empowerment strategy to strengthen the social safety net.

According to the SNPS, “the Social and Solidarity Economy, if supported by an adequate public policy, can contribute to the economic security of all sections of the population and their autonomy. Covering different forms of organization (including associations, NGOs, foundations, and cooperatives) and reaching all sectors, the Social and Solidarity Economy can become a response to the lack of economic diversification faced by Djibouti (…). In addition, the Social and Solidarity Economy can contribute to the construction of intra and inter-generational solidarity and be a school of participative values that promote organized citizen’s representation”.

Taking into account the existing law on cooperatives (Law No.16/AN/13/7th), the framework law on the SSE defines norms, principles and forms of organizations of the SSE and establishes structures and instruments that promote the development of the SSE. The national registrar of the SSE organizations is located in the Ministry of Social Affairs and Solidarity. Under the law, the government encourages people, particularly women, youth and those in rural areas, to form their SSE organizations to meet their common needs. The linkages and complementarities between the SSE and microfinance instruments will also be strengthened.

Djibouti is part of the Universal Social Protection (USP) 2030 Initiative, co-chaired by the ILO and the World Bank. The ILO will continue to work with the government of Djibouti for the implementation of the SNPS and the development of the SSE organizations.