South Sudan Govt plans to train young people in hydrocarbons

South Sudanese celebrate the country’s Independence Day |Photo: © Thessherald

South Sudanese Petroleum Minister Puot Kang Chol announced on Tuesday, December 22 that his country has taken initiatives to optimize the country’s oil exploitation.

According to the Turkish news site Anadolu Agency , the idea is to create a training center specializing in the field, and to launch a database center. The latter will allow Juba to host its oil and mining data hitherto held by Sudan.

The creation of the specialized training center is scheduled for 2021. It aims to develop the skills of South Sudanese, in order to reduce the influence of (, including China, Russia, South Africa, and Nig in crewel9) ria. , in the process of oil exploitation.

The country’s proven oil reserves are estimated at 3.5 billion barrels, of which only 30% are in areas already explored.

The South Sudanese economy is largely dependent on oil. Production fell from 170,000 barrels to 165,000 barrels per day (bpd) due in particular to the plunge in crude prices in 2020. The authorities plan to increase this production to 300,000 bpd over the next two years, ie the pre-war production.


Source: Agence Ecofin

Correction And Fact About South Sudan Oil Revenue Ownership, In Response To:

Longer Mathiec Wol, Researcher, On His Paper, Titled: “THE STATE OF OIL REVENUE AND OWNERSHIP IN SOUTH SUDAN”

Opinion | By Paul Tethloach Dak

July 18, 2020 (Thessherald)–After going through a piece of writing by the above mentioned writer, my eyes got caught-up with interest to correct some mischief, misquiding and denting information which the former has injected into public domain through Facebook pages and other media outlets; as part of “who owns the shares of oil revenue South Sudan petroleum industry”. This misquiding information deserve a response, hence, the public is not confused by some of these so called researchers. The role of a researcher is always to find fact; first by designing a methodology, collecting data, analyzing, and interpreting using various tools and techniques in order to draw a sound and final conclusion out of biases for the betterment of society or organization.

As per the the above writer, he had only collected the shareholders percentage allocation in Exploration and Production Sharing Agreement (EPSA), but what it’s, why it’s, and how it came to an existence felt-short to justified. He had only added up percentages of shareholders to 100% and 300%, then according to him boom; South Sudan lost revenue! This is mischief!

Yes, South Sudan oil and gas sector needs a serious approach of reform, but realistically this ought to be manned with true heart of nationalism, less emotional reaction and not exactly as was smeared by Mr. Longar Machiech, for wrongly pointing fingers on shareholders, legally has consequences. Therefore, it’s imperative to correct this mischief before public bought it.

In our country’s oil and gas sector; there is an agreement in place guiding the operationalization of this industry between the government of South Sudan and partners/ joint venture companies: namely, China National Petroleum Company (CNPC), PETRONAS- Malaysia, ONGC Vindish-India, Nilepet-South Sudan, at el: This agreement is called Exploration and Production Sharing Agreement (EPSA). It stipulates that, due to the fact that these above companies had contributed their capital/budget to invest by exploring the oil, drilling, producing , transporting and refining, plus salaries they are paying to their staffs and local staffs, then of course, all these spent multi millions of dollars must be paid back to them, and on top with a certain added profit as a gain… This kind of deal in the EPSA is called “Oil cost or operational cost”. And it’s 45% out of 100%.

What this implies is that, given any daily oil production of (100%), out of which 45% of this will go to those above mentioned partners, and 55% out of which remains to government of South Sudan government. For better clarity: assumed, the total daily production of South Sudan oil is 300,000bbl/day (barrels per day), so what this meant is: 45% going to partners in figure is equal to: 135,000bbl/day. And 55% going to our government is equal to: 165,000bbl/day

Now, after partners received their share, then they will go back and divide the sales generated according to who had contributed how much of money based on their shareholding percentages such as: 41%, 40%, 8%, 6%, 5%… and this shareholdership varying from company A, B, C.

But bear in mind that, this distribution amongst the partners has nothing to do with our government or doesn’t affect our 55% that was left to to our government be it Finance or ministry of petroleum.

Based on the above simple narrative, the writer only picked up what belongs to partners and missed to go deeper in his research to see what belongs to government of South Sudan (55%).

Yes, when it comes to the 55% remains to our government, one may raise his/her eye brows and ask many questions, but this is not the topic of the day.

However, there is of course a cheating and mismanagement exploited and being done by the partners and I am not exonerating them. Question always, remained unanswered is if partners, then take 45% as to pay back their initial investment capital cost; how much is that debt and when shall it be cleared by our country? This is the work of auditing department from the ministry and I believe, there is already a right answer for it.

Another area, where the partners are cheating us is that they brought to work in South Sudan expatriates staffs and paid them with at least a minimum of 20,000USD, while their top leaders earn 40,000-70,000USD monthly. And yet at the end of the day, these monies paid to expatriates/foreigners are being deducted/claimed back by the same partners from our oil through 45% of ‘oil cost’, with this keeps inflating and bloating the debt we owe them/partners rising up exponentially. Now, the more our debt to them kept building up without clearing, the longer they will remain dominating and having their footprints in South Sudan Oil and Gas sector.

Another area where the partners have cheated us is; even though the EPSA gives them shareholdership of 45%, it’s unfortunate that this is being miss-interpreted structurally in terms of how currently the employment structure is being set at the Joint Operating Companies (JOCs). This 45% shareholdership is meant to cut some oil sales and give it to partners as, way of compensating them for how much money the had spent but not the other way around of filling majority of top positions in our oil and gas sector. This is mischief!

Yes, currently, the partners may occupy some of these technical positions where is deemed, shall the capacity of local staffs is not developed to best level; nevertheless and at the same time, locals with at least technical know how should be embedded/overshadowed with these expatriates to train and learn from them such that gradually and progressively would be able to takeover those technical positions after five or ten years. Currently, this is not the case, and most locals remained redundant and barely are being sent for training or other Human Resource Development process. In other words, local are working to win breads but not prepared for future development.

Given this attitude of intransigency from partners and without a strong pressure to push them by our local authorities to comply with policies for better manpower development, then those higher positions in the join operating companies such as DAR, SPOC, GPOC, etc: occupied by expatriates such as Section-heads, Managers and GMs will remain under by partner X, Y, Z. This is unbecoming, else the partners will have their feet remain longer in South Sudan oil sector for years…

When studied the India EPSA in relation to how it works with partners in that country, it is clear that the position of president of any operating company must be a local/Indian person but vice president shall come from partners. But in South Sudan’s EPSA, it’s a reverse and only the vice president is given to us. A lot of work is needed here!

Income wise, most of the presidents from partners earn more than 60,000USD a month, while our vice presidents only earn 9,000USD monthly. Same is true, that an engineer from China or Malaysia in the drilling department earns 30,000USD a month, while his counterpart locally earns 1,500USD a month. Absurd, and this in comparison to other countries is unfair. And indeed more and more work need to be done. It’s only the ministry of petroleum and country’s concerned authorities should have a gut to rectify all these anomalies… We all deserve an equal and better treatment than foreigners!

In conclusion: The ongoing pollution in the oilfields, lack of better compensation to the local staffs, coupled with poor human resource development in this sector are undeniable facts which are acknowledgeable. However, our government is not 100% or 300% cheated by partners as was wrongly placed, so let facts remains respected.


The writer holds Bachelor in Petroleum Engineering, MBA Oil and Gas Management. And can be reached at: ptethloach@gmail.com

Opinion: Quit scapegoating, true leaders accept self political failure

By Miyong Kuon

Senior government officials posing for a group picture as they welcome Hon. Dak Duop in Juba/ Photo: File

April 17, 2020 (Thessherald)–At the hill of COVID-19, political defection ensued in South Sudan. This time, leaders should work with their party members to help educate the public about the dangerous virus and offer mitigation plans. But none of that is happening.

In politics, the opponent’s mission is to do anything to divide your camp and define your fate. It is, unfortunately, part of the game, so it is, however, not normal, but it is what it is.

My comrades, if you fail to see that coming, empty promises will drive you to the wrong hands. South Sudan’s future is more significant than the positions we are opting for today. Can we let the dust settle first, so we call for what we think we worth?

An increasingly dimmer view of the SPLM-IO by those who should understand and solve any shortcomings is now a central feature of politicians who lacks integrity.

The question is, were they part of the movement to do business, or to bring political change? The chairman entrusted many with everything from leading us at the political Bureau level to the negotiation team, and finally, they led the first team to Juba.

Now that some of the provisions they poorly negotiated in Ethiopia are crumbling, they blame their Chairman and ignite the IO moving train as they jump out.

But let it be known, sooner or letter, the fire you started will be extinguished and the train continues.

What caused this war in the first place has not disappeared simply because we signed the agreement and back to Juba. It is a process that requires everyone’s effort.

What had killed our fallen heroes and heroines and still keep innocents in IDPs and refugee camps remains a challenge that needs a leader with tenacity.

Those who die in Juba and at the battlefield sacrificed their lives for a political change to be enshrined in the constitution and create a peaceful South Sudan.

Do we believe defecting will solve our differences and constitute the change and reforms overnight?

If anyone feels we are failing as a movement and the change we fought for has been abandoned one way or another, what was our political bureau members doing? What was the governors, and party diplomats doing?

If we fail today, which is not the case here, it should be our collective failure, and we all must take that responsibility as leaders.

The general public in South Sudan staunchly supports the movement. The public still depends on the choices we are making today. If you resort to defecting because of a position, have you considered the people?

If you think you are abandoning the Chairman and the movement, think again. Know that you are relinquishing your position to a lower-tier within the part, and the train goes on. Sometimes it only makes sense if we can accept our shortcomings.

Let me draw your attention to what happened four years ago. On April 28, 2016, at 7 pm Juba, South Sudan. It was the night the formation of the Transitional Government of National Unity (TGoNU) was announced on national TV. Many of us including Hon. Dak Duop were watching TV at the Chairman’s resident.

Hon. Dak Duop’s name appeared; we all celebrated it. He was appointed the Minister of Oil, a move that relegated the widely expected candidate Gen. Taban to an insignificant Ministry, the Ministry of Mining.

Hon. Dak Duop was excited and cheerfully embraced H.E Angelina Teny and the rest in appreciation. We were there. But brother Dak was new in the SPLM party, yet none of us didn’t storm out of the movement. We considered him
a comrade and a leader.

But the Chairman decision choosing him, a former NCP didn’t go down well. It created one of the most contentious brinkmanship at the party echelon. We all can recall what transpired in the end. People died, and many more continued to die later.

Exactly 1,449 days later, Hon Dak Duop called a press conference declaring his defection from the party. Why? Because the Chairman’s appointed someone else over him.

Now he is accusing the Chairman of favoring friends and relatives, which in your words, you term it nepotism. The letter went on to also said, ”He ( the Chairman) often grasps influential positions and resources through proxies.” Indeed, when Hon. Dak name were announce on TV being appointed the Minister of oil, he rose up hugging anyone he can get in the room. Was that a proxy? If it was, why is it wrong now, and not then?

Four years later, the same leadership gave the same position not to Bhar el Ghazel or Equatoria, but to a brother who happened to be much younger, from Jikany Nuer.

Now, he calls the same Dr. Machar, who chose him over other last time, all kinds of names.
If we decide to turn the reform and change mission into business dealing and not a genuine reform, Hon. Duop should not be the one that stabs from the back. The Ministry of Oil could easily have gone to Bhar El Ghazal or Equatoria. They have the same right and should be the ones that call for nepotism if there is any.

We can now conclude that some comrades went to the bush for business, not for reform. As that becomes the case, please go in peace. You are indeed in the right hand. It is business as usual. Thank you for your short service.

The SPLM-IO party remains focused on the mission. Indeed, it is not an error that any exit of a comrade from a party is a challenge, but the defectors forgo their integrity. The tough times substantiates the gruesomeness of the reality of being an opposition. But it only strengthens the quest for genuine reforms.

The author is a former journalist and member of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-IO (SPLM-IO).


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