By Felix Andrew
SOUTH Sudan has invited South African firms to explore investment prospects in their country, saying businesspersons have to take calculated risks when investing their money and turn jeopardy into opportunities.
Speaking in South Africa during trade mission, the General Secretary of the South Sudan Chamber of Commerce, Simon Akuei Deng said that businesspeople are risk takers by nature and are willing to take calculated risks everywhere they invest their money.
Deng led a group of South Sudanese business persons in South Africa on a mission to woo investors to the world’s youngest country.
“All countries have their own risks and daring businesspeople turn risks into opportunities, for instance, investors take calculated risks when they invest their money in South Africa, as they do anywhere else in the world. Risks have not stopped companies investing in South Sudan and doing good business there,” stressed Deng.
He said they are optimistic that their message will touch the right cord amongst the local business community.
The visit of the six-member group was funded by the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti). It is part of the department’s efforts to increase trade and investments between South Africa and South Sudan.
The group also got an opportunity to market their country’s investment opportunities at the two-day Infrastructure Africa Business Forum that held in Sandton.
“There is already a presence of South African companies in South Sudan and we are on mission to woo more companies to follow the example of SAB Miller, MTN and Standard Bank and to come to our country and invest. Investment opportunities are abound in the country and are there for the South African businesses to explore,” he said.
He added that another objective of the mission was to identify investment and trade opportunities in South Africa that companies in South Sudan can take advantage of with the aim of increasing trade and investments between the two countries.
“Contrary to what the media feed people about our country, South Sudan is open for business. The SA companies that are doing business there can testify to this. There are unlimited investment opportunities in the mining, agricultural and road infrastructure sectors in the country,” said official.
He expressed confidence that businesspeople who are willing to venture into South Sudan will not be discouraged by the country’s political situation.
Speaking during a panel discussion on potential investments in South Sudan at the Infrastructure Africa Business Forum, the dti’s Foreign Economic Representative in South Sudan, Dr Julius Nyalunga said the country has a huge economic potential despite the socio-political challenges that it experiences.
“This is the opportune time for South African companies to venture into South Sudan and look for opportunities to explore in that country”
Things are shaping up very well and investment opportunities are opening up in various sectors of the South Sudanese economy,” he said.