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South Sudan and the AfDB
- The African Development Bank Group (AfDB) and the Republic of South Sudan have a history of cooperation which started after the signing on 9th January 2005 of the intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) brokered Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA). South Sudan become a member of the AfBD in May 2012, and in September 2013, ratified its membership. Following the country’s independence in July 2011, the Bank opened its country office in the capital, Juba in September 2011.
- The AfDB Group commenced lending operations in South Sudan in 2012. Since then, AfDB’s cumulative approvals to South Sudan currently amount to UA 96.67 million/USD136.79 million. The sector interventions are agriculture (USD 45 million), power (USD 38.9 million), multi-sector (USD 45.9 million), and water and sanitation (USD7.07million). Currently, there are seven active operations in the AfDB’s portfolio for South Sudan, with commitments amounting to UA 76.8 million/USD 108.8 million. In terms of sectoral distribution, the agriculture sector has the largest allocation of 41%, power sector 35.6%, multi-sector 16.5%, and water supply and sanitation 6.5%.
- The Country Strategy Paper (CSP) that defines the AfDB’s sector areas of intervention informed by the national development priorities has guided the Bank’s development assistance to South Sudan. In July 2018, the Government adopted its National Development Strategy (NDS) 2018-21, replacing the first National Development Plan 2011-13, extended to 2016. The overarching objective of the new NDS is to Consolidate Peace and Stabilize the Economy. In addition, the NDS provides the medium-term framework for implementing the Vision 2040, focusing on Justice, Liberty and Prosperity. The NDS priority areas are: (i) Creation of enabling conditions for and facilitating the return of displaced citizens; (ii) Developing and enforcing the rule of law; (iii) Ensuring secure access to adequate and nutritious food; (iv) Silencing the guns; (v) Restoring and expanding the provision of basic social services; and (vi) Restoring and maintaining basic transport infrastructure such as roads and bridges.
- Following the approval of the NDS 2018-21, the Bank in May 2019 approved the updated Interim Country Strategy Paper (I-CSP) 2012-18 extension to December 2021. The extended I-CSP remains focussed on a single pillar of State Building through Capacity Building and Infrastructure Development to support the country’s plan of improving the living conditions of its population and building economic resilience during this transitional period after years of conflict. Greater attention has been given to the root causes of fragility by supporting the government to increase transparency in the management of its natural resources to enlarge fiscal space, thereby enabling it to increase investments in productive sectors such as agriculture to ensure sustainable development, job creation and poverty alleviation.
- In line with the updated I-CSP, during the period 2019-21, the Bank plans to invest about UA 61 million (USD …. million) in grants to finance investment projects as well as provide technical assistance. These operations include the following: (i) improving access and quality of basic education; (ii) strategic urban and rural water supply and sanitation improvement; (iii) east Africa payment system; (iv) technical assistance and capacity building on oil negotiations; (v) strengthening dialogue for improved economic resilience; (vi) agriculture infrastructure and value addition; (vii) non-oil revenue mobilization and accountability; and (viii) renewable energy.
- To strengthen the Bank’s position as a knowledge institution, during the implementation of the updated I-CSP, the following analytical works and strategy formulation will be undertaken to identify lending and co-financing opportunities: (i) gender profile, (ii) climate change and green growth profile; (iii) private sector profile, (iv) debt management strategy; (v) feasibility study for the 400 KV South Sudan-Uganda Power Interconnection Project; and (vi) youth empowerment strategy. These studies will also inform the design of future projects and help guide the Government’s needed economic and related policy reforms.