South Sudan is located in northeastern Africa, south of Sudan with Uganda and Kenya to its south and Ethiopia to its east. Sudan and South Sudan – once joined together as a single nation – experienced two prolonged periods of conflict (1955-1972 and 1983-2005) during which an estimated 2.5 million people (mostly civilians) died due to starvation and drought. Peace talks resulted in a Comprehensive Peace Agreement, signed in January 2005. As part of this agreement, the south was granted a six-year period of autonomy followed by a referendum on its final status. The result of this January 2011 referendum was a vote of 98 percent in favor of secession. South Sudan attained its independence on July 9, 2011. The new country’s total land area is 644,329 square kilometers (sq km). In comparison, South Sudan is slightly smaller than the state of Texas in the U.S., and about the size of France. The country’s climate is hot with seasonal rainfall, primarily in the upland areas. The population is estimated between 8.2 and 9.2 million people, with 78 percent living in rural areas.
Industry and infrastructure in landlocked South Sudan are severely underdeveloped and poverty is widespread, following several decades of civil war with the north. Subsistence agriculture provides a living for about 85 percent of the population. Property rights are uncertain and supply and demand-based commodity price structures are missing because markets are not well organized. South Sudan has little infrastructure, and has just 60 km of paved roads. The majority of electricity is produced using costly diesel generators. Running water is scarce, and the country depends largely on imports of goods, services and capital from the north. Despite these disadvantages, South Sudan does have abundant natural resources. South Sudan produces nearly three-fourths of the former Sudan's total oil output of nearly a half million barrels per day. The government of South Sudan derives nearly 98 percent of its budget revenues from this oil production. South Sudan also holds one of the richest agricultural areas in Africa in the White Nile valley, which has extremely fertile soils and more-than-adequate water supplies. Currently, that region supports 10-20 million head of cattle. In addition, the White Nile River has sufficient flow to generate large quantities of hydroelectricity.
South Sudan has received more than US $4 billion in foreign aid since 2005, largely from the UK, U.S., Norway and the Netherlands, but the regime in Khartoum (Sudan) regularly imposed blockades on goods and capital that would have assisted South Sudan. The World Bank plans to support investment in infrastructure, agriculture and power generation for the new nation. Agricultural products from South Sudan include sorghum, maize, rice, millet, wheat, gum arabic, sugarcane, mangoes, papayas, bananas, sweet potatoes, sunflower, cotton, sesame, cassava, beans, peanuts and livestock. The East and Southern Africa Division is responsible for IFDC activities in South Sudan.
Current IFDC Projects in South Sudan
- Toward Sustainable Clusters in Agribusiness through Learning in Entrepreneurship (2SCALE), 2012-2016
2SCALE is improving rural livelihoods, nutrition and food security in Benin, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Mali, Mozambique, Nigeria, South Sudan and Uganda, with 1.15 million smallholder families ultimately increasing their productivity by 100 percent and their net incomes by 30 percent. A key component is the development of a portfolio of 500 robust and viable agribusiness clusters and value chains to supply food to regional, national and local markets and the least fortunate, also known as base-of-the-pyramid (BoP) consumers.
DONOR: The Netherlands’ Directorate-General for International Cooperation (DGIS)
In May 2011, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the Kingdom of the Netherlands, IFDC and the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) signed a communiqué to formalize their joint commitment to promote food security and the development of the agricultural private sector in South Sudan. In collaboration with AGRA, IFDC is supporting the program, which will help transform agriculture in South Sudan from subsistence farming to a market-oriented, competitive and profitable agricultural system.
IFDC is assisting farmers to increase their productivity and incomes by educating them about the benefits of high quality seed and modern fertilizer technologies and training them in their proper use. A voucher program is being organized to increase farmers’ access to agro-inputs and to build business for rural agro-dealers. Over the life of the project, Seeds for Development will harness the entrepreneurial spirit of agro-dealers, seed companies, farmers, food processors and bankers to commercialize the South Sudanese agricultural value chain.
DONORS: U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) “Feed the Future” initiative and the Howard G. Buffet Foundation through the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA)
Recent IFDC Projects in South Sudan
- Accelerating Agribusiness in Africa – Bridge (AAA-Bridge), 2011-2012
The AAA-Bridge project was an extension of Strategic Alliance for Agricultural Development in Africa (SAADA-B) activities. The objective of AAA-Bridge was to expand IFDC activities and best practices developed in West Africa, such as the Competitive Agricultural Systems and Enterprises (CASE) solution, Integrated Soil Fertility Management (ISFM), fertilizer deep placement (FDP), fertilizer resource assessments and market information systems (MIS), into other regions of Africa. Specifically, this project expansion was designed to replicate the CASE approach and other aspects of the IFDC agribusiness model in select countries of eastern and southern Africa.
South Sudan Information
South Sudan Articles
New IFDC Projects in East and Southern Africa (Taken from IFDC Report Volume 36, No 4)