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The government of South Sudan has officially launched the construction of a Juba Specialized Economic Zone (SEZ), an industrial area for business and investment activities. The 625 square km land, located about 30km from the South Sudan capital, Juba, will reportedly be used for building a new modern city, mainly for large businesses that will boost the young nation’s economy.
While speaking at the ground-breaking ceremony held in Jokukweboma, the country’s commerce, industry and investment Minister, Garang Diing Akuong, said the creation of the SEZ indicates the desire and determination of South Sudan’s Central Equatorial state to encourage and promote investments and economic development in the state.
“The specialized Economic Zone is indeed in line with the policy of the government of the Republic of South Sudan, which promotes National and Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in South Sudan,” said Akuong, who represented President Kiir at the occasion.
The FDI investment inflow, the Minister added, will not happen if there are no clear investment policies at national or state levels.
“..nevertheless, provisions of these kind of infrastructure and availability of others, such as tax incentives, non-tariff barriers, power, roads, access to finance etc, will pave the way for more investments to consider South Sudan as one of the best investment destinations in the region, if not the world,” he stressed.
The Minister further said South Sudan, with its rich natural resources, needs to diversify in order to enhance economic growth and reduce too much dependency on other countries.
The establishment of SEZ will provide an opportunity for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and their linkage to large-scale enterprises and to seize this opportunity for their development and expansion, the Minister added.