Avatar photo

Greg Dorey


17th February 2012

Djibouti – An Important Ally

A few days ago I was in Djibouti to present my credentials as the non-resident UK Ambassador. This is an good example of how two countries can have an excellent and mutually fruitful relationship even in the absence of physical Embassies (though in our case at least with an extremely good and well-connected Honorary Consul in place).

Djibouti occupies a key strategic position in the region. We are grateful for all they do to assist us with military movements e.g. Royal Naval ships visit to their port and with the battle against terrorism and piracy. We also welcome their deployment of troops to AMISOM, the allied forces fighting terrorism in Somalia, and their constructive role in international negotiations on Somalia – not least in the London Conference on Somalia taking place next week.

We are able to give something back to Djibouti – English Language training of Djiboutian security forces; political support on regional issues; some military training; and the UK’s share of multilateral development assistance through the EU, UN and African Development Bank. But I would like to see a greater UK share in trade and investment with and in Djibouti, given their ambitious plans to develop several new ports and associated infrastructure over the next few years.

I look forward to building an even deeper relationship with our friends in Djibouti during my time in the region.