Archive for the ‘Economy’ Category

Why Have a Whole Ministry of EAC Affairs?

Posted: March 20, 2017 by PaanLuel Wël in Business, Economy, Mayen Ayarbior

By Mayen D.M.A Ayarbior, Juba, South Sudan

kuol manyang at the EAC summit

(R-L) Presidents Yoweri Museveni, Uhuru Kenyatta, Paul Kagame and South Sudan Defence Minister Kuol Manyang Juuk at the 10th Summit of Heads of State of the Northern Corridor.

March 20, 2017 (SSB) — After last week’s Council of Ministers meeting we learned that South Sudan will establish a Ministry of East African Affairs. It is not too late to look at the pros and cons of such a decision. Considering that the peace agreement stipulated a specific number of Ministries and Commission as-well-as the costs involved in establishing a whole new ministry at this time of economic meltdown, people must be thinking about the usefulness of the new Ministry.

On one side, some analyses against the move would suggest that establishing specialized departments (Department of East African Affairs) at relevant Ministries such as those of Foreign Affairs, Interior, Trade and Commerce should be sufficient for handling various EAC related tasks. Alternatively, something like a Commission might also be sufficient.

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By Daniel Juol Nhomngek, Kampala Uganda

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March 12, 2017 (SSB) — Corruption has become meaningless since it has become a common topic in South Sudan. Because of that it no longer appeals to many people as it has become monotonous.  However what is clear is that corruption is increasing day and night in South Sudan as it is indicated by various reports. And each time the report on corruption is released corruption is shown to be eating the society to the core as it permeates every part of the system.

Thus, in this article, I intend to comment on the impact of corruption in general and with specific regard to the recent report on corruption scandals in the South Sudan Crisis Management Committee (CMC) of 2013. The CMC was formed in the aftermath of the outbreak of civil war in 2013. It was made up of several Government ministers and some technocrats.  The purpose of the CMC was to manage crises that were caused by the civil war in order to help citizens that were affected by the war.

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#BringBackOurMoney or clear your name. Our people are dying of hunger because of famine yet you are making yourselves richer #BloodShedFree2017 #Anataban” Jacob Bul Bior

FULL LIST OF 63 CORRUPT OFFICIALS WHO EMBEZZLED 360 MILLION POUNDS OF THE CRISIS MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE (CMC) FUND, ACCORDING TO THE LEAKED REPORT FROM SUDAN TRIBUNE

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By Baak Chan Yak Deng, Kampala, Uganda

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salary in rss

Salaries in dramatic decline

March 4, 2017 (SSB) — As I said on Thursday Article that South Sudan economy has faces twin challenges of high inflation and low growth. Most of the short term policy instruments at our disposal trade off one for the other. For example, the some individuals have raised interest rates to combat inflation. This may lower inflation, but hurts growth because it increases the cost of funds for companies.

Yes it has long been considered a scourge, an obstacle to investment and a tax on the thrifty. It seems strange, then, that inflation is now touted as a solution to the rich world’s economic troubles. At first sight the case seems compelling. If central banks had a higher target for inflation, that would allow for bigger cuts in real interest rates in a recession.

Faster inflation makes it easier to restore cost-competitiveness in depressed industries and regions. And it would help reduce the private and public debt burdens that weigh on the rich world’s economies. In practice, however, allowing prices to rise more quickly has costs as well as benefits.

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The Governor of the Central Bank should re-introduce pegged exchange rate system to stem economic haemorrhage in South Sudan

By Daniel Machar Dhieu, Juba, South Sudan     

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March 2, 2017 (SSB) — Our country, South Sudan is in danger; criminal cases increased day by day and no any solution to these crimes activities which affecting the nation at this time. The situation becomes worsen and more uncontrollable in all corners of South Sudan.

This has shown clearly that there is no improvement at this juncture of hunger and insecurity of which no solution provided by our government. The only step taken by government was declaration of famine in all parts of South Sudan.

The government seems to have failed in handling its affairs across the nation, and this has been since comprehensible especially in the sector of economic management as the worse area in the government. The main central bank of South Sudan is in-charge of sponsoring the current black market in Juba. It was Central Bank policies that push US dollar at floating rate toward black market.

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By Daniel Juol Nhomngek, Kampala, Uganda

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February 27, 2017 (SSB) — South Sudan on Monday February 20, 2017 was declared to be facing imminent famine unless something is done to save people from hunger. The cause of famine or hunger was said to have its origin from the action of man thus, the term “man-made hunger or famine.”

The fact that millions of people of South Sudan are facing serious threats from death due to a “man-made” tragedy, a fact which is acknowledged by Isaiah Chol Aruai, chairman of South Sudan’s National Bureau of Statistics, on behalf of the Government, who said that some parts of the northern Greater Unity region “are classified in famine, or … risk of famine.”

In addition, Aid Agencies said that one hundred thousand (100,000) people are affected by the famine, which threatens another one million people in the coming months. As the press statement released jointly by the World Food Programme (WFP), UN children’s agency UNICEF and the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), it is observed in that statement that—”A formal famine declaration means people have already started dying of hunger. The situation is the worst hunger catastrophe since fighting erupted more than three years ago,”

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By Kur Wël Kur, Adelaide, Australia

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February 19, 2017 (SSB) —- The book written in fragments of time, the lifespan of our planet, the Bible, proves to us (South Sudanese) and to the portion of the world population who’re Christians that God think(s) about South Sudanese in the same vein He thought about Israelites when they were troubled by the bondage and the wilderness.

But how many times have we read between the lines in the book of ages to understand this comparison? None, I would assume. I assumed because our leaders and us, citizens have tried all possibilities of human weaknesses, or call it human wickedness to prove ourselves ungodly. Think of barbaric killings. Dicing women into pieces. Rapping children and elderly. Roasting our fellow citizens alive… I can list a thousand cases to match the word-limit of this article, but still it won’t convey the message of this article in its purity.

So, I would like to settle on explaining why the economic crisis in South Sudan resembles the Israelites’ life in wilderness. I do acknowledge though, much is said and written about economic woes in our beloved country by the experts of immensely academic credentials. So, mind will make sense of biblical comparisons. Greed. Laziness. We’re all leaders; we’re followers.

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By Madhieu Thiep Madhieu, Juba, South Sudan

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February 14, 2017 (SSB) —- During our independent from Khartoum oppressive regime in 2011, the people of South Sudan were overwhelmingly happier about the birth of their own sovereign nation which they thought would be free from all forms of miseries. Citizens countrywide celebrated and welcomed the historic victory with joy and great expectations, that service would be closer to them at affordable cost. But that hope seemed to have yielded fruits for the first few years of our independent, because our South Sudanese pound was more valuable and prove stronger in the region.

 Life was so much simple those days especially for people who lack job to earn living. Survival was easily tackled without serious struggle or hardship. Markets were full of items and the prices remain manageable compare to today where prices of goods keep on skyrocketing hour after an hour and day by day. Today, Scarcity of commodities in the market and higher cost of trading have negatively affected the livelihood of ordinary people of South Sudan who heavily rely on low government pay or micro businesses.

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By Awuol Gabriel Arok, Juba, South Sudan    

farm in Bor, Jonglei state

A farm in Bor, Jonglei state, courtesy of Abel Majur Leek of Mareng, Anyidi payam 

February 13, 2017 (SSB) — There is nothing so pleasingly than to feast on one’s plate of hard work, my chief shout of admiration goes to the hard working people of Terekeka state , citizens of Terekeka should be commended and egged on, it is only after the  child is given a spoon that he begins to understand the practical way of eating, having witnessed the hard work of Mundari women of the Terekeka State during my petite vocational stay at Yieki Boma of the former Mongalla Payam from 2011-2013, hopefully there are agricultural viability in that part of the country, this is associated to the variety of soil type that are favourable for growing all types of crops and also prop up by people farming sanguinary.

With glimpse of farming in Terekeka State; youths look after cattle, sheep, goats and other stuffs such as fishing and hunting whereas the women, the aged and children attends the farms, as early as the day show its presence the households members wake up as early as 5 in the morning for the farm’s duties and afterward return in the evening at 7 in the evening after a long and arduous day works, while at a time others sleep at their farms. That moral fiber is production booster and therefore, should be shore up through agricultural components such as agricultural extension, Inputs supply in form of seeds, hoes, pangas, ploughs and wheelbarrows.

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By Baak Chan Yak Deng, Juba, South Sudan

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February 9, 2017 (SSB) — The South Sudan economy faces twin challenges of high inflation and low growth. Most of the short term policy instruments at our disposal trade off one for the other. For example, the RBI has raised interest rates to combat inflation. This may lower inflation, but hurts growth because it increases the cost of funds for companies.

Nearly all short term fixes are going to face this problem that they can’t solve both inflation and growth together. But in the long term, there is a way we can reduce inflation and increase growth simultaneously. The way to we do this is by investing heavily in infrastructure. This includes both creating new infrastructure and improving existing infrastructure.

The three areas where we need to tackle inflation are housing, transportation, and food. House prices are much too high relative to average incomes, and increased construction will make housing more affordable. When it comes to transport, poor roads and poor public transport make transportation expensive and slow. This affects both the movement of individuals, and of goods. Better transport infrastructure will reduce the cost of transportation, and thus lower inflation.

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By Hon. Atem Garang D. Dekuek, Juba, SOUTH SUDAN

abel-alier-and-governor-philip-aguer-demontarting-peace-and-reconciliation-picture-by-mach-samuel

Abel ALier and Philip Aguer picture by Mach Samuel

  1. Introduction

February 3, 2017 (SSB) — The Triangle formed by greater Pibor, Akobo and Bor is an area afflicted with hostility, violence and cattle rustling among its inhabitants (Anyuak, Murle, Nuer and Dinka). The violence had been and is continuing to persist on, as a consequence of endemic poverty, possibly aggravated by climate change, inadequacy of population of livestock, obsolete agricultural methods and implements, weak local governments, possession of huge numbers of small automatic firearms, politicization and polarization of the inhabitants and inhospitable environmental conditions of the area! All these factors contribute to the instability of this region.

Following the end of the liberation war with the signing of the CPA in 2005, the area was left devastated, exhausted, impoverished and isolated that accelerated the intensity of violence and hostility.

The British colonial authorities in South Sudan in the twentieth century (1898-1956) were able to establish a strong local administration in the area and applied modern strategies to: stop violence, maintain peaceful co-existence and provide methods for sharing natural resources. The British authorities policy of “pacification”; was achieved by 1930 in this area. Native administration was introduced which was used strictly as an instrument for law provisions enforcement, utilized traditional local authority, where the chiefs plaid pivotal role, rendered some minimum social services, collected taxes from the inhabitants, and conducted programmed peace conferences of which all their resolutions were implemented without fail.

At the dawn of the independence of Sudan in 1956, the legacy that the British rule left behind was the stability and peace among the people of this area. Unfortunately, that stability and peace started gradually to unwind back to a state resemblance to the situation that was prevailing pre-British rule, where the violence and anarchy spun. In 1963 the Anya-Nya war intensified and engulfed the area and the local authorities begun to lose their grip on the communities. That situation was, somehow, reversed in 1972 when a peace agreement between the Sudan government and the Anya-Nya was reached in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, though the stability and peaceful co-existence did not attain the standards that preceded the independence of Sudan. The rest of the period from 1983 to this day is a contemporary history of deteriorating security and relations in the area and reverting to pre-British rule era. It is actually more chaotic and worse as the inhabitants had acquired a lot of modern automatic small firearms, which make the death toll to be very high and tragic. Also the communities during the last three decades had been antagonized and divided along opposing, hostile and warring political affiliations.

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By Garang Atem Ayiik (Gatem), Nairobi, Kenya

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January 18, 2017 (SSB) — This week, H.E President Salva Kiir issued a decree relieving top officials in central bank of South Sudan and appointing a new governor and his deputy. As expected, the President is concerned about hyper-inflation that is causing misery to citizens.

Author of this article believe that strong institutions, manned by strong people, play complementary role in meeting an institutional goals.

Without significant changes to central bank’s operation; so long as a central bank remain as an ATM of executive, so long technical staffs’ capacities are not enhanced, recent changes in central bank can be analogized to “changing monkeys on trees, but leaving the forest intact.”

On central bank governance, economists agreed that a good central bank is built on three pillars – independence, accountability and transparency. Any form of governance adopted by a central bank, has an impact on achieving its main objective of macroeconomic stability.

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By David Matiop Gai, Juba, South Sudan

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January 7, 2017 (SSB) — I saw it difficult to liberate ourselves from the individuals of self-exploitation, stubborn or obstinate willfulness, as in pursuing one’s own wishes, or set free the imprisonments and the bondage in which people of South Sudan are in since the very beginning of CPA in chronic diseases such as corruption, nepotism, tribalism, hatred, jealousy, selfish, envy, deception, war/conflicts, trade slavery, gossips, propaganda, and many others base on the destiny of how people are swallowing themselves on the bases of exploitation. The word “exploitation”, is defined in a similar distinction. It is the action or fact of treating someone unfairly in order to benefit from their work or the action of making use of and benefiting from resources, while the engine operation is like combustion engines are of two general types.

We have liberated ourselves from the bondage or oppression of Arabs from Khartoum, but there are more hard works needed to be done by South Sudanese people in general which are also needed to be champion by a brave man/woman of selfish less life. Dr. John Garang whom I always like to quoted said, “I did not get a man who will distributes resources equally or equitably to people and a gun that shoot by its own”. Dr. John Garang compared South Sudanese people with two impossible things: A man that can distribute resources fairly, a man who can forget about himself or not grabs things for his own benefit, can South Sudan get such people? And a gun that shoot by its own, because men are defined as selfish, and no gun should shoot without human being. John Garang concluded it hardly.

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IMF Staff Completes 2016 Article IV Mission on South Sudan

“South Sudan faces massive economic challenges in the wake of prolonged internal conflict and subdued oil prices. A relapse of violence in July following the formation of the Transitional Government of National Unity three months earlier compounded the crisis which started in December 2013 and challenged the peace process. Real income, adjusted for terms of trade losses, has declined by about 50 percent since 2013 and the number of people in need of humanitarian assistance has risen to unprecedented levels. Inflation has soared to about 500 percent (12 months through October), the exchange rate has depreciated steeply, and foreign exchange reserves are close to exhaustion. According to UN specialized organizations, the conflict has led to nearly two million internally displaced, more than one million refugees in neighboring countries, and about five million food-insecure South Sudanese.”

December 14, 2016 (SSB) —- End-of-Mission press releases include statements of IMF staff teams that convey preliminary findings after a visit to a country. The views expressed in this statement are those of the IMF staff and do not necessarily represent the views of the IMF’s Executive Board. Based on the preliminary findings of this mission, staff will prepare a report that, subject to management approval, will be presented to the IMF’s Executive Board for discussion and decision

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Michael Malaak Mayen, Juba, South Sudan

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December 12, 2016 (SSB) — The effectiveness of official intervention in foreign exchange market is a crucial policy issue for South Sudan. The Bank of South Sudan abolished its fixed exchange rate regime due to gross overvaluation of it currency, the South Sudanese Pound. Since the abandoning of the fixed exchange rate regime and the introduction of a manage float in 2015, the Bank of South Sudan introduced the monthly and sometimes quarterly auctioning of foreign exchange. In the new regime, the Bank instructed commercial banks to report their daily exchange rates.

In the face of the underdeveloped interbank foreign exchange market, the weighted average of commercial banks daily rates, enable the Bank of South Sudan to obtain market-based official exchange rate.  The introduction of the auctions was the consequence of the country’s shallow and underdeveloped interbank market for foreign exchange. Intervention in foreign exchange market changes the balance between domestic and foreign currency denominated in the markets, which induces the investors to adjust their portfolio, changing the exchange rate. Furthermore, the information contained in interventions modifies expectations regarding the future spot exchange rate, leading to an immediate adjustment to the current exchange rate.

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By David Mayen Ayarbior, Juba, South Sudan

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From rags to riches: The amazing transition of the telecommunication companies in South Sudan

December 10, 2016 (SSB) — The level of ‘theft’ inflicted upon the people of South Sudan by telecommunication companies is beyond description.  The helpless people have complained time and again against that theft and sought protection, but that complain seemed to have fallen on the deaf ears of those who should protect the people. The only resort left now is for the people to organize a large demonstration and move to the headquarters of Vivacell, Zain and MTN and close them by force. Even though that may be extreme, as it might carry negative consequences for the people themselves, what other options are there?

Just like the V8s (running schools) in South Sudan which have become like donkeys in Mauritania, found in the least developed villages, the country did not need that big number of telecom companies in the first place. In addition to their insatiable appetite for looting the helpless South Sudanese in broad day light, they are the biggest earners of money in the country, least taxed and largest industry responsible for the biggest capital repatriation. “Parasites” is the single word description befitting them.

One can load SSP 500 and for some reasons which can only be defended by Vivacell and MTN, the money will be over in ten minutes, yah minutes, not hours. That is even if you did not talk with anyone. When you go to their offices, someone will arrogantly take your phone and teach you how to switch your “mobile data” on and off, because it incurs money to keep it on.

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South Sudanese perspective of what derailed the journey to economic development

By Paul Logali, Logali House, Juba

The current state of RSS

December 6, 2016 (SSB) — After the government of South Sudan was established in 2006, initiation of rapid economic development programs followed led by the public sector in partnership with the private sector. Part of my assignment was to participate in developing industrial strategies and polices for the ministry of Commerce, Industry and Investment.

To get this done we had to travel to all the previous 10 states to consider the views and perspectives of all the state and non state actors about economic development issues, the roles of the private sector and the challenges they thought should be captured in the formulation of these policies.

We equipped ourselves with working tool kits [questionnaires] that have been tested in other post conflict environments to help us collect the data required. Among these tools were a set of kits designed to examine and inform us about the mental models of our people.

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By Awuol Gabriel Arok, Juba, South Sudan

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November 29, 2016 (SSB) — Currencies dealers and their associates had put their big mouths deep into the country monetary pot and have gulp down as much as they can and are left with nothing for tomorrow. While they were busy erecting up umbrellas of victimization under the intensive heat of Juba City, our once valuable currency has terribly been soaked under the exchanging hands of the crafty umbrella boys.

After an abuse and exploitation of the country currency by the outlawed money dealers, the currency has disappeared into unknown crack hole through the black money pot of the infamous Currencies dealers. Without being spared by their careless dealing the umbrella boys are becoming the sacrificial lambs of their own blooper.

Though majority of the Umbrella boys have never attended formal education, their practical knowledge on Petr-dollar and how fuel can be converted into dollar have propelled them to change gear of their trade and have shifted their business to Roadside Bottle Petrol Stations along the major roadsides in Juba and other big cities of South Sudan, this illegal fuel dealing has been distressing  the entire population of Juba City, the drivers of public buses and tank water suppliers have aggressively join the club of cheating without sympathy.

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By Gen. Salva Kiir Mayardit, Juba, South Sudan

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Commander John Garang and Commander Salva Kiir in Rumbek, during the war of liberation struggle

November 24, 2016 (SSB) — We have been challenged economically as a nation and you my people may be thinking that the government is not doing anything to counter this. I am glad to inform you that we are working on how to achieve a sustainable economic growth. We are promoting social equity and this will mean giving equal opportunities in all fields to all the citizens of south Sudan in a healthy environment.

Before anything of this sort is achieved, security and safety must be guaranteed to all the citizens of south Sudan because it’s only in a peaceful and safe environment people can get to work on issues affecting them or the nation as a whole on daily basis. My government is going to release funds to improve our road conditions and security will be deployed in areas where unknown gunmen have been maiming our citizens.

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The gov’t of the Republic of South Sudan is contributing 73 billion SSP; the total budget, including pledged donors’ contribution amount to about 142 billion SSP. Of the national budget, Juba is taking 97% while states take 3%; that is, of the 73 billion ssp, only 2 billion ssp will be shared among the 28 states. And that is the least of the problem, for Khartoum is said to be pocketing about 80% of the oil revenue and the rest by the foreign oil companies. This time around though, Juba can’t afford to shut it down even if they are literally on the verge of getting negative%.

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Comments and Observations of the Goch Makuach-led Sub-committee on Revenues

November 23, 2016 (SSB) — The Committee takes this opportunity to appreciate Hon. Stephen Dhieu Dau, Minister of Finance and Planning, TGoNU for his FY2016/2017 budget speech to the Transitional National Legislature on 18 October 2016. The Committee has examined four documents with respect to the resource envelope. These were: a) the FY2016/2017 budget speech; b) economic and fiscal stabilization measures action plan; c) taxation amendment bill, 2016; and d) financial bill, 2016/2017. Based on information obtained from these documents, the Committee held meetings with 37 potential sources of revenue, including donor agencies. It is on the basis of these meetings that the Committee would like to make general and specific comments on the proposed resource envelope for the FY2016/2017 budget.

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