National News

Goods from Khartoum in Wau and Aweil

By Nichola Dominic Mandil

Goods from the Sudanese capital Khartoum have started entering the South Sudanese towns of Wau, Aweil, the chairman of Chamber of Commerce in Wau State, Wol Charles has revealed.

This latest development came following the recent visit by President Salva Kiir to Khartoum for a mini summit with his Sudanese counterpart, President Omar El-Bashir.

During their meeting in Khartoum two weeks ago, the two leaders agreed to operationalise the Cooperation Agreements signed by the two countries in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa in September 2012.

One of the key milestones that emanated from the meeting of the two presidents was the re-opening of the border between Sudan and South Sudan for the benefit of the two nations.

Sudan closed its borders with South Sudan following the eruption of the conflict in South Sudan in 2013. The two countries have been accusing each other of supporting rebel groups on their territories. They had earlier agreed to end all forms of support to the rebel factions operation on each other’s territories.

In an exclusive statement to Juba Monitor newspaper by phone from Wau yesterday, the Chairman of the Chamber of Commerce in Wau State, Wol Charles confirmed that trucks from Khartoum have been entering Wau as from last week.

“Yes, vehicles from Khartoum have been entering Wau these days (in big numbers). Often thirty-five trucks enter on daily basis carrying goods. But as of this week, we received at least five trucks from Khartoum mounted with variety of goods,” Mr. Wol stated.

Regarding the types of goods being imported from Khartoum, he said, “We have assortments of goods such as; sugar, wheat flour, cooking oil, sweets, biscuits, and even non-food items such as clothes,” Wol added.

“Now the prices of goods in the main Wau market have started to reduce due to this latest development. From next week we expect to be receiving seventy trucks on daily basis,” the chairman of Wau Chamber of Commerce said with optimism.

He confirmed that the price of 50-kilograms bag of sugar which used to sell at 10,000 South Sudanese Pounds (SSP) has reduced to 7,250 SSP. He also said 50-Kgs of wheat flour which used to sell at 8,500 SSP, has reduced to 5,700 SSP.

“When these trucks from Khartoum enter, prices of goods reduce tremendously. Soon we in Wau State would even be supplying Juba with goods that we receive from Khartoum. If not because of the bad conditions of roads between Wau, Rumbek, Yareli and Juba, we would have started supplying Juba with goods from Sudan,” Wol asserted.

Mr. Wol divulged that some trucks mounted with goods had also entered Aweil and more are expected to arrive. He expressed hope that if the road connecting Gok Machar with Aweil opens, it would ease the movement of the trucks from Khartoum. He said that road now is impassable due to the rainy season.

Mr. Wol also confirmed to Juba Monitor that he will arrive in the national capital Juba on Monday next week (20th November) to participate in a conference to be organized by the South Sudan Chamber of Commerce on Tuesday, 21st November 2017.

On Saturday, 11th November 2017, the state-own South Sudan Broadcasting Corporation (SSBC-Radio) in its evening news bulletin in Arabic, carried a similar story, quoting officials in the state who disclosed that goods from the Sudan have also been entering Renk town in northern part of the country.

Renk shares close proximity with the Sudanese-neighbouring White Nile State’s capital Kosti. Residents of Renk are the majority beneficiaries of goods from the Sudan.

However, residents of the national capital Juba and other states bordering Uganda, depend on imported goods from East African countries of Uganda and Kenya.

 

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