National, News

Trade minister to review contracts

By William Madouk


National Ministry of Trade and Industry has obtained cabinet approval to conduct a comprehensive review of all trading contracts falling under his jurisdiction.

William Anyuon Kuol expressed his concern over prevalence of foreign nationals occupying a significant portion of informal employment opportunities in retail businesses and driving jobs.

Mr. Kuol said the move is meant to ensure fairness, transparency, and compliance with existing regulations.

“We also know this market that we have here; it is the market that is being captured—the good term that I can use is—by ‘our friends’ (foreigners),” he said.

“Most of the people who are even doing retail work are not South Sudanese. Even though drivers are not South Sudanese, most of them are our friends,” Kuol added.

According to him, the idea of foreigners working in the market is not bad, but they must ensure that they follow the laws by implementing the fact that 80 per cent of workers must be South Sudanese as per labour law.

“There are some random contracts that have been given without proper study, and these contracts are very important because they are related to the lives of the people of South Sudan,” Minister Kuol noted.

He hinted that he would start cleaning up his docket to make sure that the contracts meet safety standards and have adequate national human resources.

“I took permission from the National Council of Ministers that I need to review all these contracts,” he continued, “to make sure that the contracts meet the standards and needs of the people of South Sudan.”

He underscored that these efforts need collective responsibility from South Sudanese to ensure their creativity and full participation in economic growth.

“So let us make sure we need to be creative, and we need to work for our country and the welfare of our people.”

In May 2023, the national legislative assembly summoned at least four senior government officials to explain the worsening economic situation and the dominance of the market by foreigners.

John Agany, chairperson of the parliamentary committee for information in the national assembly, said the lawmakers made the decision to summon ministers of trade and industry, investment, finance, and labor during a parliamentary sitting.

“They will also have to answer as to why the market is being dominated by foreigners. Our citizens need jobs, but the foreigners are the ones who are now controlling the market, even the work that should be done by our own citizens,” he added.


Comments are closed.