When it celebrated independence on 9 July 2011, the Republic of South Sudan became both the newest and the most oil-dependent country in the world. South Sudan has abundant
oil wealth that, if managed responsibly, could provide for the long-term
development and prosperity its citizens deserve. There are encouraging signs
that the South Sudanese government is committed to ensuring this outcome.
Indeed, the country’s emerging legal framework includes wide-ranging public
reporting, contract allocation, and revenue management standards that draw from
international best practice.
However, implementation of these transparency and accountability measures will not be easy. It will require a concerted effort and prioritisation from across the government. It will also demand a genuine commitment to move beyond the legacy of closed-door oil sector management left by the country’s former rulers in Khartoum.
Now is the time for action.
The purpose of this report is to provide an analysis of South Sudan’s new oil legislation, the commitments that have been made to transparency and accountability, the challenges for implementation, and the institutional, reporting, and auditing gaps which remain.