AOP17: South Sudan Highlights

South Sudan, East Africa’s only mature oil producer, has faced monumental challenges in rebooting its oil and gas sector, from security concerns to overcoming investment risk, but 2017 has seen a resurgence of investors interested in the country. Our panel tackles what it takes to do business in South Sudan.

The expert panel was made up of Ayuel Ngor Ayuel, Vice President of Dar Petroleum Operating Company; Chris Connolly, Country Director of WS Insight; Kris Mbaya, Managing Director of UAP – Old Mutual Group; Mangok Khalil, CEO of Juba Petrotech and Makear Michael Dot, CEO of Nile Petroleum Service Co.; as well as moderator James Chester, Chief Content Officer of Africa Branding Corporation.

The panel agrees that the South Sudanese government has made great progress in restoring security, even deploying a security task force in 2017 to address issues at the Unity Field. Officials at Dar Petroleum Operating Company, the only consortia producing oil currently, are confident in the safety of their employees in the field.

They also argue that investments in technology and equipment are necessary as the country moves forward with ramping up production and increasing new entrants to the oil and gas sector.

Investments in infrastructure — from refineries to pipelines to power plants — represent a key opportunity for investors. These projects will be crucial to the further development of South Sudan’s energy sector, especially as a landlocked country, and cooperation with its East African neighbors will continue to be a top priority, panelists said.