Build the Nation: South Sudan Prioritizes Infrastructure Development

Image: bannafarsai – Adobe Stock Photos

While several African countries saw significant delays to infrastructure projects due the COVID-19 pandemic, South Sudan has been committed to dramatically raising its living standards, spurring industrialization and generating economic benefits through large-scale infrastructural investments. Built against a backdrop of reformed political stability, the new administration is focused on improving infrastructure to stimulate growth and investment across energy and non-energy sectors. Accordingly, the country is prioritizing significant improvement of roads, the revitalization of power generation infrastructure and the development of improved water and sanitation infrastructure, supported by a new Infrastructural Development Plan and the establishment of foreign partnerships.  

By prioritizing new and improved road networks, South Sudan is growing both trade and transportation opportunities within the country. Notably, South Sudan is concentrating on the construction of major in-country road networks, including the Juba-Bahr El-Ghazal Highway, the Juba-Bor-Malakal Highway, the Juba-Yambio Highway and the Juba-Nadapal Highway. By partnering with international construction firms, South Sudan is enhancing connectivity and ensuring the direct transport of goods and services to residents throughout the country. In addition to local networks, South Sudan is improving regional networks with neighboring countries through the development of key projects such as the Kenya-South Sudan Highway, a 248-km highway linking Kenya to South Sudan. By focusing on linkages with the wider region, South Sudan is opening up trade and transportation opportunities, encouraging economic growth in the process.

“Logistics is one of our biggest problems that we are trying to solve. Last year, we started work on national roads that will connect South Sudan to both Ethiopia and Sudan. This will assist with the movement of goods and materials, especially to the oil fields, which are very close to the borders of both countries,” H.E. Awow Daniel Chuang, Undersecretary, Ministry of Petroleum, told Pump Africa.

What’s more, South Sudan aims to revitalize power generation infrastructure across the country by focusing on infrastructure replacement, grid maintenance and expansion. With a $14.6-million loan from the World Development Bank, along with assistance from the Power Construction Corporation of China, the country has replaced its 11kV lines with new 33kV lines, constructed 13,450 prestressed concrete poles and increased transmission capacity in the capital of Juba. Additionally, the country is focused on increasing local generation capacity. The Ezra Group of Companies, for example, launched a 100 MW power plant in November 2019 that now supplies electricity to Juba. The government is also turning towards renewable sources through the development of a 120 MW hydropower project. By focusing on locally-generated power, South Sudan is mitigating electricity deficits across the country, increasing standards of living and significantly boosting the potential for economic growth.

In addition to road and power infrastructure, South Sudan is committed to improving water and sanitation. In June 2019, the World Development Bank committed $24.7 million to the financing of South Sudan’s Strategic Water Supply and Sanitation and Improvement Project, aimed at rehabilitating Juba’s water distribution network. The project involves the development of solar-powered water distribution systems and is expected to significantly increase living standards and spur industrial growth. Additionally, Petronas’ Water for Life Project, a collaborative initiative with South Sudan’s Ministry of Petroleum and Nilepet, is significantly expanding water accessibility and addressing growing environmental concerns across the country. By ensuring a safe, secure and clean water supply, South Sudan is generating sustainable socioeconomic growth, while improving quality of life.

In a bid to further expand domestic infrastructure, South Sudan has established – with the assistance of the African Development Bank – an Infrastructure Action Plan (IAP) that outlines a strategy for stakeholders to collectively provide support to the country’s development challenges. The IAP focuses on infrastructural development and proposes a significant transformation of the economy within the next decade. By prioritizing the revitalization of existing infrastructure, as well as the development of new infrastructure, South Sudan is generating economic growth, galvanizing industrialization and building a competitive nation.

Africa Oil & Power (AOP) will host the fourth edition of the South Sudan Oil & Power (SSOP) 2021 Conference & Exhibition in Juba on June 29-30, organized with the support of the Ministry of Petroleum, Ministry of Energy and Dams, Ministry of Trade and Industry, Ministry of Labor and African Energy Chamber. Under the theme, #BuildtheNation: Capital Raising and Innovative Financing to Build Critical Energy Infrastructure Projects, SSOP 2021 seeks to drive capital investment into hydrocarbons, infrastructure, power generation and technology. To find out more about the event, please visit and contact AOP Senior Director James Chester directly at


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