The Asian companies which exploit Sudan’s oil are holding on tight as tensions mount over Abyei and a new constitutional order is created in the South
As Khartoum and Juba discussed new oil arrangements in Addis Ababa, the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) seized control of the contested district of Abyei on 19-21 May. Nevertheless, as it approaches Independence on 9 July, the Government of South Sudan has assured Asian investors of continuity. The GOSS is, however, in the challenging position of relying upon oil for development – and upon its long-time foe, the National Congress Party (NCP) government in Khartoum, to get that oil to market. The pipelines that carry the South’s oil to Port Sudan all run through the North to refineries there. Some think that Abyei is just a bargaining chip in the oil negotiations, but Abyei also matters politically to both sides.
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