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South Sudan plans resumption of oil production in Unity state

South Sudan said it was working to restart oil production in Unity state after more than a year of no operation due to the ongoing conflict in the region.

“The government assures the oil operating companies that seurity situation in Unity state has improved significantly. We have given them complete assurance of the safety of their staff,” petreolem minister, Stephen Dhieu Dau said Saturday. “The government will provide security and protection to oil workers at the production sites in Unity state,” he added.

Dau said the process for resumption of oil production had started amid mproved security. “Our gallant SPLA forces are in complete control of the situation. We congratulate them for this noble work and encourage them to exert more efforts in providing protection to civilians from any harm and their properties, South Sudanese oil minister”, he stressed.

Gordon Buay, a South Sudanese government representative at its mission in Washington told Sudan Tribune that the armed opposition fighters allied to the former vice president, Riek Machar posed no major longer threat to the resumption of oil production and transportation to international market, through its northern neigbour.

“Our plan now as a government is to resume oil production in unity state. We also want to complete refinery project so that we put to an end this perennial petrol shortages that has continued to be the source of concern. The refinery in unity state was due for launching before this conflict. Now it will be launched because there is no threat to the refinery and the resumption of the oil production,” Buay confidently revealed.

He added, “Rebels of Riek Machar and Taban Deng Gai are nowhere near oil facilities in the state. They have been defeated and are outside South Sudan territory in Unity state”.

Buay further claimed that pro-government forces in the state were not only in complete control of the general security situation, but were reinforcing their colleagues in Upper Nile state, allegedly with an objective to push them out of Tunja, Kaka and Wedokona. South Sudan used to produce up to 240,000 barrels per day (bpd) of oil before the December 2013 out beak of conflict, which saw a drop in production to just 160,000 barrels per day mainly from the country’s main oil fields in Upper Nile state region. Revenues from oil account for more than 90 percent of South Sudan’s annual budget.

Source : Sudan Tribune
Posted On: 6/22/2015 12:00:00 AM

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