JUBA (HAN) July 6.2016. Public Diplomacy & Regional Security News. The South Sudanese foreign affairs minister is due to visit China later this month, the ministry said in a statement issued on Tuesday.
- “[Foreign Affairs Minister] Hon. Deng Alor Kuol to visit China and sign Cooperation Agreement with Chinese Government on 27th July 2016,” partly reads the ministry’s statement circulated to the media.
Minister Alor, according to the official spokesperson of the foreign affairs ministry, met the outgoing Chinese Ambassador to South Sudan, Ma Qiang and bid a farewell to the diplomat on Tuesday.
“[The] Chinese Ambassador on behalf of his government invited Hon. Minister Alor to head a delegation from South Sudan to visit china on 27th July 2016 for some political consultations with Chinese leadership and to sign a cooperation agreement with China on Developmental projects and political Affairs between the two Countries,” it added.
This will be the minister’s first trip to Beijing since formation of South Sudan’s Transitional Government of National Unity in April this year.
The ministry did not, however, give details on the political and development projects to be signed in the cooperation agreement.
Ma Qiang, the foreign affairs minister said in the statement, reiterated the Chinese government’s commitment to continue supporting South Sudan in the different developmental fields.
China’s economic engagement with South Sudan is growing rapidly since the East African nation got its independence in 2011.
According to the Chinese and South Sudanese official statistics, around 100 to 140 Chinese enterprises currently operate in South Sudan. Since 2008, South Sudan and China have reportedly concluded agreements worth about $10 billion with South Sudan government, and the latter through official channels, has expressed willingness to have Beijing’s support for projects worth $ 8 billion.
Analysts say instability in South Sudan poses challenges to China’s burgeoning economic engagement with Juba and normal operations of Chinese entities in the country.