National, News

Japan, South Sudan ink Juba River Port deal

By Mamer Abraham

South Sudan government strikes a deal with the government of Japan to provide a 2 billion, nine hundred and thirty million Japanese yen grant to promote economic activities through Juba River Port.

Anna Gista Duku, the Acting Undersecretary in the Ministry of Transport, and the Undersecretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Mayen Dut Wol, signed on behalf of the government.

Meanwhile, the Japanese government was represented by Tanakana Hiroyuki, a representative of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).

“South Sudan and Japan signed a grant agreement and exchange of notes on Friday to the tune of two billion nine hundred and thirty million Japanese yen to promote the economic and social development of the country,” a statement by the foreign affairs ministry partly read.

The undersecretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Mayen Dut Wol, confided that the port was essential for the country’s economic development.

“The project for the development of Juba River Port is very important for the economic development of South Sudan as it will open and facilitate river transport networks and access in the country,” Mayen said.

He lauded JICA for its relentless support across the country.

The Japanese Head of Mission to South Sudan, Tsutsumi Naohiro, stated that the project started in 2012 but was interrupted by the construction of the Freedom Bridge and Juba Water Treatment System Facilities.

The representative of JICA, Tanakana Hiroyuki said the project would improve trade and facilitate maximum service delivery.

On May 19, 2022, the 560-metre-long Freedom Bridge, funded by the government of Japan, was officially opened for public use.

The bridge was constructed for use by heavy trucks that transport goods from East Africa to relieve the worn-out Gumbo Bridge.

South Sudan President Salva Kiir stated during the official launching of the bridge that it was evidence of the long-lasting bilateral cooperation between the government and the Japanese.

The President appreciated the Japanese people’s unconditional support.

“Today is a great day for the city of Juba, the country of South Sudan, and our region. The bridge we are inaugurating today has been a project in the works for a very long time. The need for this bridge was identified in 2011, and it was conceived as a unique link for regional integration that would enhance economic growth,” Kiir said.

President Kiir said the bridge was to connect South Sudan to the region through the road transport network.

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