The First Vice President of South Sudan, Taban Deng Gai, has called for stronger cooperation between Russia and his country to boost the oil and infrastructure sectors.
“With the resumption of peace and security, the government of South Sudan has been especially active in attracting investment to the country. These efforts are proving successful,” said Taban.
“We recently signed a second Exploration and Production Sharing Agreement for our biggest oil block and are proud to have welcomed sizeable new entrants into our oil licenses over the past few years. We are proud to count Rosneft and other Russian energy companies as the partners of the rebuilding of South Sudan’s economy and oil industry,” he said.
Taban this week led a South Sudanese delegation to the St Petersburg International Economic Forum.
The country has since resumed production of oil after a destructive civil war that nearly grounded the economy.
South Sudan currently produces about 180,000 barrels per day.
30,000 barrels of crude oil daily goes into an account (Exim Bank) to fund construction of major highways connecting the three regions of South Sudan with the capital, Juba.
In St Petersburg, Taban insisted on the importance of the Russian support to South Sudan’s political stability and economic prosperity.
He welcomed Russia’s various initiatives to strengthen its dialogue with Africa this year, and invited more Russian companies to come and do business in South Sudan.
“We have committed to a long-lasting peace, prosperity and security for our people, and have emerged as a true African and global frontier of opportunity where everything is possible and the prospect of building a new world has become a reality,” he added.
Areas of investment
On the importance of South Sudan’s cooperation with Russia in the areas of energy and oil and gas, Taban highlighted the numerous investment opportunities offered to foreign investors within South Sudan’s oil industry.
These include blocks B1, A1 to A6, E1 and E2, but also opportunities in pipeline infrastructure to the Indian Ocean, and in downstream infrastructure with the Safinat Refinery.
“Our energy relations with Russia go beyond that of investments,” he explained.
“We welcomed Russia’s support and engagement in South Sudan across the value chain, including when it comes to sharing experiences on local content and developing capacity building programs for our engineers.”
Taban was accompanied by Minister of Petroleum, Ezekiel Lol Gatkuoth, who invited Russian companies and investors to participate in the upcoming South Sudan Oil and Power Conference in Juba on October 28-30, 2019.
South Sudan has been successful in bringing back damaged and oilfields into production.
As efforts continue to develop the sector, officials anticipate pre-independence production levels of 350,000 bopd should be reached by 2020.
The government has been reforming the business climate to attract investments across South Sudan’s economy.