South Sudan lures Gulf investors

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Gulf-based investors and wealth funds are seeking to tap lucrative investment opportunities in South Sudan in the areas of infrastructure, mining and energy
Members of the SPLM during pre-independence march and rally through Juba, Southern Sudan. Gulf-based investors and wealth funds are seeking to tap lucrative investment opportunities in South Sudan in the areas of infrastructure, mining and energy. Photo-Paul Banks/UN/AR

Several wealthy Gulf investors, including Sovereign Wealth Funds (SWFs) are eyeing lucrative opportunities in various sectors of South Sudan.

Speaking to Gulf News, Eric Essigner, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Emirates Capital Limited, said that the “youngest” country in the world offers significant growth potential and “a pioneer job in order to develop the whole country.” He further stated that, “we are already in talks with several Sovereign Wealth Funds from the GCC and we already have received a tremendous interest from those entities, who not only would invest directly in cash, but also would like to expand their activities into of south of Sudan.”

While every sector in the underdeveloped country offers tremendous growth potential, investors will be eyeing developments in food procurement and other infrastructure-related opportunities.  Wealth funds will also be targeting investment avenues in several sectors of the South Sudanese economy.  Emirates Capital Limited recently entered into an investment agreement with the government of South Sudan, which is keen to open its economy to foreign investors and accelerate economic growth.

To attract investment in different areas of the economy, the government of South Sudan has unveiled its 5-year-plan of up to USD 55 billion. Under the deal signed with Emirates Capital, the government of South Sudan has made an allocation to the investment fund equaling 35,000 barrel of oil per day for duration of 20 years. Other areas of interest in the oil-rich African country, created in 2011, include agriculture, mining and energy. The country is looking to build a refinery, and additional petrochemical units to benefit from the export of value-added products.

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