Archive for the ‘Economy’ Category


The politics of road building in South Sudan: There are more questions than answers in the oil for road deal between the Republic of South Sudan and the People’s Republic of China

By Mamer Deng Mamer, Bor, South Sudan

oil for road in South Sudan

Thursday, May 23, 2019 (PW) — At the end of March, President Salva Kiir Mayardit witnessed the signing of a contract for construction of roads from Juba to Terekeka and onwards to the Bahr Ghazal region. The contract was signed by officials from the Ministry of Petroleum and Chinese firm, Shandong Hi-Speed Group Co. ltd (SDHS).[1]  Given that similar ceremonies did not progress beyond the signing of documents or pronouncements in front of the media, I am doubtful that this latest event for the “oil infrastructure” project will make any difference.

How did we arrive at “oil for infrastructure” project?

The March 25, 2019 ceremony was a culmination of a new strategy adapted by President Kiir’s administration to use oil revenues for road construction, which he announced in 2018 during a trip to the Forum on China-Africa Corporation (FOCAC) in Beijing.  Chinese President Xi Jinping told Kiir that China was “ready to strengthen cooperation with South Sudan in areas such as infrastructure and to encourage more Chinese enterprises to participate in the country’s economic and social development.”[2]  President Kiir also told his Chinese counterpart that infrastructural development was his priority. 

President Kiir expanded on reasons behind his strategy when he told a Catholic congregation that “I decided that the infrastructure or whatever that we want to be done by foreign companies has to be done in exchange for crude oil because our people don’t want to see money.  If they see money, their hands start shaking,”[3] implying that corrupt officials were likely to siphon off money earmarked for projects.

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By Malith Alier, Perth, Australia

salary

Saturday, 6 April 2019 (PW) – The Bank of South Sudan (BSS), originally a regional branch of the Bank of Sudan took over the responsibility of being the central Bank for the newly formed country in 2011. The 2011 Act, establishing the BSS, authorised it to regulate all the financial institutions in the country including the commercial banks.

The late Elijah Malok Aleng, was the first governor of the Bank of Southern Sudan up until shortly after independence. He stayed in the office for a few months after July 9, 2011 and was replaced by Cornelius Koriom Mayik, his former deputy.

Fact or fiction, Mr. Aleng was rumoured to have given a symbolic broom to the country’s ruler during handover. That was not the “new broom sweeps clean,” literally according to the rumour. It might have meant a licence for clearing whatever he built and sustained during the six-year interim period by the new and untested governor. The new governor-designate to take over had previously presided over the collapse of a private bank in the immediate past.

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By Malith Alier, Perth, Australia

Jump-starting the economy of South Sudan?

Wednesday, 3 April 2019 (PW) — Through the gates they come. All sorts of people! The two gates are for vehicles and people. Both gates punctured on the western part of the fortifying fence. It is one of the few gated ministries in the complex. The reasons for this are very clear to the layman.

The car gate solely belongs to the Very Important Persons (VIP). In the category of VIP are ministers, undersecretaries, Directors General and of course generals from the armed forces including SPLA, police, prisons, Wildlife and Fire Brigade.

“Please allow Gen. G to pass, give way, eh!” the security personal asked the female police door opener. “Your identity card please?” the security guy asked another visitor with searching eyes. “You’re Mr. Juba?” “Yes, visitor confirmed. “Where are you going?” “I am going to see the Director General of Finance.” “He’s not in today!” “But I was asked last week by the office manager to see him today!” “No, I told you he’s not there.” “You can go and come back next week, it is already Friday you know.”

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Hon. Salvatore Garang Mabiordit: The victim of exotic politics of egregious lies and distortions

By Simon Yel Yel, Juba, South Sudan

Minister of Finance and Economic Planning Salvatore Garang Mabiordit

Thursday, March 21, 2019 (PW) — Thought not blood, unmeasurable ink has been spilt over the Minister for Finance and Economic Planning, Hon. Salvatore Garang Mabior. But the truth remains: He is not corrupt as being misleadingly alleged. That’s the reason I don’t buy all these corruption allegations born of consummate hatred and insipid circumlocution which have been circulating on the online media for sometimes now. It’s merely a political attrition in play.

All these platitudinous sermons carry no shred of truth by any imagination. They are being purposely contrived and propagated by his political nemesis to settle political scores. However, his legacy is imprinted in a hard stone. Even if he is thrown into political oblivion by this exotic politics of subterfuge and egregious lies – and I am sure he will withstand all the odds and continue climbing the ladder of stardom and greatness, his legacy is written in the hard rock.

Upon his appointment, he has successfully managed to ameliorate the living conditions and that is why the country is now economically convalescing. Get your popcorn and let me peel your eyes. His achievements are ineffable and here are the headlines.

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Open Economy and the Subsequent Exchange Rates for South Sudan

Posted: March 19, 2019 by PaanLuel Wël Media Ltd. in Economy, Kuir Mayen Kuir

By Kuir Mayen Kuir, Nairobi, Kenya

salary

Monday, March 18, 2019 (PW) — Does the debilitating economic menace in South Sudan has a solution? Are there goods and services leaving the country as exports? What is the nature of the country’s balance of payments (BoP)? All the above are quite some reasonable questions that any person can easily seek to find better answers addressing them. However, in the spirit of reasoning together towards our economic evaluation, the question on whether our economy is an open or closed one does not omit!

It is a question that can never be ignored in any analysis. Everyone has his or her own view on the same but as for me, the theme is still unclear because I haven’t seen or heard any restrictions that our government has strengthened towards controlling the goods and services coming into the country, neither have I seen any goods and services constantly leaving the country as an export apart from the common oil and its components.

We shall see the substantial evidences in due course given the current situation of peace successfully taking its full implementation over the country (I am optimistic that peace is coming) but it is apparently evidence that by our country emulating the open economic system, it can practically do well compared to when it decides otherwise.

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There is no Res nullius land to be ceased in South Sudan

By Moses Nyara, Juba, South Sudan

F4FA369F-A280-4F5A-9DD5-707D49CC2B97.jpeg

Sunday, March 3, 2019 (PW) — Rights over land in South Sudan are never lost or abandoned so as to become res nullius. The idea that  the land must belong to the government is not only a deliberate plan to extinguish seisin of the land in South Sudan but a threat to the existence of the South Sudan State.

South Sudan is not a settled territory. The South Sudan Nation State did not result from a conquest.  Land rights in South Sudan predates any nation State or government. There has never been acquisition of sovereignty over any land in South Sudan. Not by the French; the British or the Arabs. Our ancestors fought viciously against such a vice. There is no one to who we must swore fealty or make homage.

The utterance in in Bahr al Ghazal region during the so-called dialogue meeting in Wau that the land must belong to the state is nothing but an attempt to introduce the English doctrine of tenure and must be resisted. (more…)


An open letter to the state, local and county governments of Jonglei state: Should the poor unemployed citizen pays taxes?

By Abit kuir Abit, Kabarak University, Kenya

Dau Akoi an Rebecca nyandeng

Rebecca Nyandeng and Twic East County Commisioner, Dau Akoi, arriving at the celebration site at Panyagoor, 9 July 2012

Friday, March 01, 2019 (PW) — Dear, Hon Philip Aguer, Hon Dut Achueek lual Deng and Hon Dau Akoi Jurkuch, first and foremost, I would like to pay my gratitude and thanks for your kind heart leadership style you have shown us in our state (Jonglei). It will remain as a nice role model for us the current and some generations to come.

Your Excellencies Honorable leaders of my state, I hope this letter finds you well. While submitting this appeal to you and your esteemed administrations, I am not in any way claiming superior abilities and wisdom than you (all) might have acquired. But want to state that the entire state depends on you for a right decision(s) against promoters of the graft.

Continual inaction is worsening already awful situation your fellow citizens face and may only end in more pains, regrets, and wishes, which cannot help remedy consequential evil that marring our history or losses likely to result. (more…)


Malith Alier, Perth, Australia

Cattle camp

Friday, February 8, 2019 (PW) — This is a crazy Friday talk. The idea sprang up at the moment of news time and the back of the mind validated it for an essay. Before, one goes to the keyboard, there are many ideas that come to mind as to what themes, subjects and most importantly aims for a particular piece. I have visited a number of museums on a number of occasions: motor, maritime, tractor, Immigration and so on. I therefore, thought that the world has gone around as far as making absolutely everything for everything as museums are concerned.

I thought about  cattle or livestock museum for my birth country, Sudan. However, before, I pen something about it and cattle, I first had to google something like it. The nearest museum was found in Texas, USA in form of Cattle Raisers Museum. I saw a few photos of cattle, boots, straps and saddles as well as pieces of writing to describe what used to happen in relation to the cattle and their raisers.

This did not discourage me to put forward an idea for cattle keepers or government in South Sudan. The pastoralists love their cattle to death in this part of the world. Cattle are not only for milk and meat but are also for prestige and pride. They also also for payment of bride price and fines in the event of murder. (more…)


By John Deng Diar Diing, Mombasa, Kenya

The Treasure of South Sudan

Monday, February 04, 2019 (PW) — Quoting the Deputy Information Minister, Lily Albino Akol Akol, on the decision of the Cabinet of the government of South Sudan to allocate 10,000 barrels of its crude oil per day to Chinese firms to build roads within the country. This decision delivered what I have, as a road engineer aspired for, for far too long. It is my opinion that this is going to be the first petrodollar to flow directly to addressing the needs of our vulnerable population since 2005.

Various development economists and experiences of economic upward mobility from transient economies and developed countries attest that transport infrastructures and energy have the highest and quick economic multiplying effects. It has been shown that countries that invested in energy and transport infrastructure realize a burst in the growth of processing industries, improvement in mobility of skills, people, goods and services and agricultural sector.

South Sudan has a classified road network of 19,000km; that includes primary, secondary and intra-county roads. The Primary road network, that is, the trunk roads that connect all the former ten (10) States Headquarters and major international borders is about 6,400km. If this 10,000 bpd of the crude oil is projected to flow for 10 years, and assuming that crude prices oscillate around 61US$ as it stands, then we will expect about 61×10,000 x 365×10 =2,226,500,000 US$. (more…)


By Kurthii Manyuat, Beijing, China

red carpet, Bashir and kiir in khartoum1

Red carpet, Bashir and Kiir in Khartoum, November 1, 2017

Friday, January 11, 2019 (PW) —- Although South Sudan attained it independent in 2011, it was in large part of a political independent, the economic had arguably failed to make it out during the process due to the absolute necessity of using Sudanese pipeline facility to transit south Sudan’s only export commodity–the oil.

Great Nile pipeline, despite being used as a weapon for extracting fund by Sudan, it is extremely significant for the government of South Sudan to transport its oil to the international market and keep the economy alive as long as nothing is done to reduce 98% oil dependency. It had been a precious opportunity for Sudan to discover the vulnerability of the south.

Our partners in the oil pipeline deal have enjoyed huge leverage for a very long time and we have endured all the costs to the extent of earning $5dollar per barrel of oil in 2014, 2015. the worse could be coming since the smoldering bread protest which others called it a  ‘revolution’ in our northern neighborhood may in one way or another increase appetite for that regime to seek fund voraciously.

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By Tong Kot Kuocnin, Juba, South Sudan

Burnt oil tanker along the Nimule-Juba road, Sept 2016.jpg

Burnt oil tanker along the Nimule-Juba road, Sept 2016.jpg

  1. Introduction

Thursday, December 18, 2018 (PW) — On World Environment Day celebrated on the 5th day of the Month of May 2018, First Vice-President Taban Deng Gai presided over the launch of the country’s State of Environment and Outlook Report, a first for the country. The publication is the result of a joint study by UN Environment and the Ministry of Environment and Forestry.

The report acknowledges that the ongoing strife in the country “is the major impediment to good governance, the productive use of natural resources and the protection of the country’s environmental assets”. It highlights the lack of effective institutions to resolve disputes over ownership of natural resources peacefully and the challenges of millions of refugees, returnees and internally displaced persons. It also notes that climate change and natural hazards have further complicated the environmental situation facing the country.

The report further highlights how climate change could exacerbate access to safe water, lead to poor sanitation and food insecurity. It adds that “a flourishing agriculture sector, which depends on the viability of land and water resources, is crucial to long-term peace and development”. It also recommends that “disaster risk reduction and climate adaptation measures need to be implemented to build a climate resilient society”. (more…)


Why a kite is not rich: Corruption and its consequences in South Sudan

By Deng Akok Muoradid, Juba, South Sudan

minister

Sabina Dario Lokolong, deputy minister for humanitarian affairs and disaster management, Nov 2011

Thursday, October 11, 2018 (PW) — A kite is a bird that kills other parasites for food and its prey are fish, chicks, ducklings etc. it has strong sight and it swoops down with its legs lowered to snatch small prey like chicks, rodents and fish. It is the most corrupted bird in the world known for threatening the lives of its fellow birds as well as human beings.

However a kite remains one of the poorest birds in the world despite of the fact that it continues to snatch the ready human food and the younger ones of its fellow birds and this poverty is considered a consequence of the above habit.

The above story of a kite reflect the ongoing corruption in South Sudan and it clearly indicates that whatever is grabbed or taken without legal [procedures is always accompanied by consequences. The more you corrupt other people’s resources, the more problems you face.

My fellows South Sudanese have overwhelmingly adopted corruption as the only way of accumulating wealth, acquiring academic documents, and securing public positions or scholarships has adapted corruption. Everyone has a dream of becoming a minister, director general, senior manager or public official in order to get a chance of corrupting public resources simply to be in the same level with those serving in the above mentioned positions. (more…)


By Kuir Mayen Kuir, Nairobi, Kenya

salary

salary

Wednesday, October 10, 2018 (PW) — At a time, it is very healthy to emulate some positive transformation. In the contrast this aspect of transformation does not just come when it has never been sought for. It takes people’s competence and integrity to land on this vital aspect of life. I think this is the time that the central bank of South Sudan should seek systemic transformation in order to find our way out of this economic mess.

It may not be easy but it begs for attention by the concern stakeholders in the economic departments in south Sudan. Why do I say this? We all know that our economy is nearing to hit its final breath and soon it shall be nowhere in the economic pathways of the world. To whom shall the blame settled on? Someone at the ministerial seat of the central bank of South Sudan, however it can as well be thwarted from further escalation. It is just a matter of resolving to better policies that can enhance economic growth instead of just watching it happen without intervention.

Anyway, from the biblical allusion, we all understand that there is no situation that is permanent; I believe we are just competence and seriousness away from the right point. In faith and trust, our situation will soon be an example of situations that changed for better but it will not just end without the correct intervention. Something worthwhile has to be done because bad times come and pass. Whatever that is happening in south Sudan now, had worst levels in Weimar German between 1918 and 1924, when the country was hit by a skyrocketed inflation (hyperinflation) as a result of instantaneous orders by the Versailles treaty demanding war reparations within a short period of time. (more…)


By Ater Yuot Riak (PhD), Juba, South Sudan

Adija

Wednesday, September 5, 2018 (PW) — The American Oil Company Chevron discovered the oil in Southern Sudan at the end of 1970s and tried to utilize it. However, in 1984 the company stopped its activities because of the war that stared in 1983 between the government of Sudan and the Sudan People’s Liberation Army/Movement (SPLA/M). During fighting, the government of Sudan used not to consult with local communities when oil companies want to work in their villages. After the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) which was signed in 2005, these practices had stopped and communities are consulted when their land is to be used by the oil companies.

After independence in 2011, South Sudan holds more than 75% of the total oil reserves of the previous Sudan. New consortia (operating companies) were formed for oil production and further exploration. South Sudan created Nile Petroleum Corporation (NILEPET) to replace Sudan Petroleum Corporation (SUDAPET) in consortia. With Dar Petroleum Operating Company (DPOC) operating in Northern Upper Nile State, Sudd Petroleum Operating Company (SPOC) and Greater Pioneer Operating Company (GPOC) are operating in Ruweng State and Northern Liech State respectively.

Oil fields facilities were built in the areas of Melut, Pariang and Tharjath. These facilities include, rigs, pipelines, roads, oil base camps (OBC), wells, electrical power lines, power plant, oil manifold gatherings (OGM), airports, etc. All these facilities were built on communities’ lands as a result they were forced to leave their lands and villages to oil companies. Usually, communities who lost their lands and villages relocate to nearby villages. In new residents, they are not allowed to own a land but only build houses or cultivate. Some communities relocate to nearby towns where they experience difficulties in coping with the urban life that includes owning a plot, schools for children in addition to the daily live expenses.

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By Zack Mayul, Juba, South Sudan

Monday, September 3, 2018 (PW) — In your minds, with able board of directors, functional departments: Marketing & Sales Managers, reasonable Human Resource Officers, do you, by any chance, try to fit the shoes of your customers?

Does this old adage ‘customer is a king’ exists in your two latest version of the dictionary? I mean, do you feel the pain that your customers are going through, even a little? If you don’t know, then here is why a tired customer is wailing.

It beats my understanding and someone else’s too, that you have no difference with any other fraudulent monopolise business. Your shoddy principles and your dully activities are killing us. (more…)


By Malith Alier, Perth, Australia

adija

Wednesday, August 22, 2018 (PW) — With the likely advent of peace in the coming months, all the attention now turns to implementation of the agreement and the elections to crown it all. In the meantime, the parties preemptively vowed to implement the agreement in letter and spirit. Possibly they are aware of the lost opportunities by not implementing the previous agreement.

Had all gone well, by now, the country would have been a different place and no one would be in this mirage any more. This country has gone through difficult periods, characterised by famine, disease such as cholera and other preventable disasters since resuming atrocities 5 years ago.

One of the advantages of having peace is the potential to innovate and grow albeit gradually with time. The advanced nations we see and look up to today in the world ceased wars and conflict many decades ago. In the absence of war a nation is able to develop and channel its human capital solely for development. It also uses its resources exclusively for this purpose. (more…)


By Kuir Mayen Kuir, Nairobi, Kenya

$18 million bonus for MP

Wednesday, August 08, 2018 (PW) — At least I can see the morning rays penetrating powerfully on the eastern horizon of South Sudan. However before I gradually open the strong opaque curtains that were hindering my eyes from seeing light, I raised a standing ovation for the country’s top leadership and most importantly to the duo who had appeared initially to be forming an interphase of water and Abyei oil.

In my capacity as a citizen and a student who was massively affected by the on-going economic crisis within our boarders, I delightfully welcome the decision of our leaders with a hope that all the economic turbulences will soon subsided. It is crystal clear that the people of South Sudan and more so those wallowing in various camps have suffered in dignified silence for so long.

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National Legislatures/Parliamentarians Receive Bonus of $18 Million in Juba

$18 million bonus for MP

Thursday, July 26, 2018 (PW) — South Sudan’s MPs, who are among the poorest-paid in the region, have received a “bonus” worth as much as $18 million in Juba. The bonus was quietly awarded to the lawmakers in the capital Juba this week, and comes two weeks after they extended the government and the President term in office until 2021.

The lump sum worth $39,000 for each MP from the two houses of parliament could take an average South Sudanese worker several years to earn what each MP has been given.

Community Empowerment for Progress Organization is concern about the lack of proper/accurate information to the public about the purpose of the amount of 18 million USD given to the national parliamentarians from National Parliament and Council of States called “Bonus for parliamentarians”. Bonus for parliamentarians for what action?

Mr. Edmund Yakani, Executive Director of CEPO says the leadership of the parliament needs to inform the public about the purpose of the received 18 million USD as bonus for parliamentarians. (more…)


By Morris Madut Kon, Kyoto, Japan

Pyramid Continental Hotel

Pyramid Continental Hotel, Juba, South Sudan; photo by Emmanuel Ariech Deng

 

Monday, June 25, 2018 (PW) — Japan is regarded as one of the world’s most innovative nations. Its dominant automobile industries lead in the developed world and their auto-products are conspicuously present in all the corners of the earth; from the famous Pennsylvania Avenue of Washington DC to Ayien Amuol Village of Twic State, “the car in front is always a Toyota”. Needless to say, Japan hasn’t always been where it is today, and their enterprises haven’t always been successful, not until they decided to incorporate the idea of “Kaizen Philosophy” or “continuous improvement” and the FIVE “S” in their management systems…and as we shall see below, South Sudan enterprises, like the rest of the world, have a lot to learn from this philosophy.

The 5S method is a tool for continuous improvement in “lean management” processes, whose task is to create a highly efficient, clean, and comfortable working environment. It is a collection of 5 simple guidelines that allows you to control the workplace visually. Enshrined in Japanese philosophy, the 5S tool encompasses five basic elements: Seiri (selection), Seiton (systematization), Seiso (shining), Seiketsu (standardization) and Shitsuke (self-discipline). (more…)