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The two-day South Sudan Oil and Power (SSOP) 2022 conference, which concluded this week in Juba, gave an insight into the region’s huge yet untapped energy potential and its high cost of electricity

SSOP 22South Sudan has done a licensing round for 14 blocks, all of which will be available. (Image Source: Adobe Stock)

“The power tariff in South Sudan is the highest in the world at approximately 40 cents per KWh. This is simply because we are using very expensive sources of energy, which are diesel and heavy fuel oils,” said Tom Remis, Undersecretary for the Ministry of Energy and Dams for South Sudan, while speaking at a panel on the region’s potential to utilise its vast oil and gas resources to alleviate energy poverty and adhere to shifts in the global energy landscape.

However, Puot Kang Chol, South Sudan’s Minister of Petroleum, said, “In the oil sector, we have opportunities. We have blocks available as well as existing blocks for those wanting to do enhanced oil recovery or improved oil recovery.”  

At SSOP 2022, Chol hence took the opportunity to invite investors from around the globe to consider South Sudan. “The number of blocks we have in South Sudan, no one else has them in the region. We have done a licensing round for 14 blocks, and those blocks will be available, all 14 of them. Our objectives are to diversify the sector and invite people from all over the world to invest directly and indirectly in the Republic of South Sudan,” he said.

The conference, which explored the theme, ‘Gateway to East African Energy’, also witnessed the closing of two major deals – Kush Bank and AIS Capital Advisors received mandate to finance US$75mn energy value chain and a MOU on the energy sector was signed between Djibouti and South Sudan

The integrated energy value chain planned by the Ezra Group and Jedco will green up existing generation facilities, add 24 MW of power to grid, and integrate the supply chain to utilise crude oil from South Sudan and refine product on site at the generating facility, with an integrated logistics division to transport crude down the Nile River.

Speaking of the MOU with Djibouti, Chol said, “South Sudan is a landlocked country and so far, we have been using Port Mombasa and Port Sudan. We also have felt it is important for us to use Port Djibouti because our biggest production is bordering Ethiopia, and now that we have Block B2 coming up, it will be important for us to open up Djibouti Port so that when we have goods that are needed for operation in the oilfields, we can easily get them from Djibouti. As a result, we have signed this agreement and have also acquired land in Djibouti that will be used for goods meant for the operation in the oilfields. The deal signed is a good deal for South Sudan.”