opinionBy Mekki Elmograbi
Some weeks ago, a group of South Sudanese officials and businessmen paid a visit to Istanbul-Turkey to launch business negotiations with big Turkish and multinational companies on several issues related to huge investment opportunities in the Republic of South Sudan-RSS.
The trip was well organized and arranged by Kenya Commercial Bank's (KCB) business club. The first fruit of this trip has appeared a month ago when a 25-member delegation from Atlas-jet Turkish Airlines Company arrived at Juba International Airport and received by Ronald Deng, the state Minister for Trade, Industry and Investment (NBG). The President of the Turkish company Murat Ersoy briefed the media at the airport, saying that the company was inspired by the huge investment potentials in the RSS, adding that investing in the airlines and aviation careers will be inaugurated very soon. Official South Sudanese sources said there is a proposal or a draft for the cooperation agreement between Atlas-jet and RSS; more "negotiations" is needed to reach an agreement between the two parties.
This step is very important for South Sudan because it contains many indicators:
Investing in airlines and civil aviation careers will improve Juba Airport and other South Sudanese Airports; a step which will make it easy and possible for investors and businessmen to reach all areas in South Sudan at any time they want. The Turkish Airline Company will involve in a comprehensive partnership with South Sudan in civil aviation to achieve what they would agreed on, it will be the a model for "cross-continent" investment in the RSS.
The coming of this Turkish Company will attract other Turkish companies and other deferent companies from East Asia, the most generous and helpful partners for Third World and African countries. Not just the Sudanese experience, many African experiences proof that Chinese, Turkish and Malaysian companies are highly needed for their good offers and their less intervention in internal political affairs. Most of Western countries stop their investments and suspend their relations under political pressures based on claims related to Human Rights and other issues. It does not matter for them what is happening in reality and what is the best solutions; political campaigns stops investments automatically!
South Sudan gained its independence in July 2011, since then the newest nation has relied on Kenyan and Ugandan investments. The economic plans were politically oriented according to "preferentiality" for those partners for their positive role in the independence of South Sudan. It is logic to do so for some time and with some limits but "business is business"!
The borders between North and South Sudan were closed for more than nine month, the oil wells were shut down to stop exporting oil through North Sudan. Last September, the two Sudans reach "Cooperation Agreement" based on "win - win" principle. Now, South Sudan is open again for business and investments owned by regional and international partners without manipulation for some partners and isolation for others. South Sudan now is able to receive the best offers from all wooers and to avoid exploitation.
Mekki Elmograbi is a press writer, media expert