OPIC, South Sudan Sign Investment Agreement
Wednesday, April 17, 2013
Signing Kicks Off the U.S. Government-Sponsored South Sudan Investment Forum
Overseas Private Investment Corporation Executive Vice President Mimi Alemayehou and South Sudan's Minister of Commerce, Industry & Investment Garang Diing Akuong sign an Investment Incentive Agreement supporting U.S. private sector investment with South Sudan. U.S. Ambassador to South Sudan Susan D. Page officiated at the ceremony.
Washington, D.C. – The Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), the U.S. Government’s development finance institution, today signed an Investment Incentive Agreement with the Government of South Sudan supporting U.S. private sector investment in Africa’s newest nation. The agreement was signed by OPIC Executive Vice President Mimi Alemayehou and South Sudan’s Minister of Commerce, Industry & Investment Garang Diing Akuong at the U.S. Government-sponsored South Sudan Investment Forum, organized by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).
The agreement affirms the two countries’ commitment to encourage U.S. private sector investment in South Sudan. It also streamlines OPIC’s ability to support U.S. companies’ investments that contribute to the economic development of the country. This agreement is the culmination of discussions that started last fall, when OPIC President and CEO Elizabeth L. Littlefield travelled to Juba to commit to negotiating the agreement and began exploring U.S. investment. OPIC has been actively seeking private sector investors to identify projects important to South Sudan’s economic development.
The first investment OPIC will support in South Sudan is the construction and operation of a 150-room hotel in Juba by Aquila Investments LLC, a Delaware-based company Taher Investments, a Jordan-based company. The hotel will provide business-friendly accommodations for foreign investors and people in the development community. The project will also support local job creation in a country dealing with high levels of unemployment.
The South Sudan Investment Forum is taking place on April 17, when government officials of the United States and Republic of South Sudan will discuss investment opportunities with representatives of private sector companies in sectors including petroleum, energy, infrastructure, and agriculture.
This investment forum follows the South Sudan Economic Partners Forum on April 16 hosted by the U.S. government in coordination with the governments of the United Kingdom, Norway and the European Union, to discuss the economic and fiscal challenges facing South Sudan and plans to diversify South Sudan’s economy to allow for sustainable long-term growth.
The U.S. government convened the South Sudan Economic Partners Forum as an opportunity for representatives of governments and international financial institutions including the International Monetary Fund, World Bank, and African Development Bank to discuss strategies to address South Sudan’s economic challenges with South Sudanese government officials and offer support for sound government policy decisions.
OPIC is the U.S. Government’s development finance institution. It mobilizes private capital to help solve critical development challenges and in doing so, advances U.S. foreign policy. Because OPIC works with the U.S. private sector, it helps U.S. businesses gain footholds in emerging markets catalyzing revenues, jobs and growth opportunities both at home and abroad. OPIC achieves its mission by providing investors with financing, guarantees, political risk insurance, and support for private equity investment funds.
Established as an agency of the U.S. Government in 1971, OPIC operates on a self-sustaining basis at no net cost to American taxpayers. OPIC services are available for new and expanding business enterprises in more than 150 countries worldwide. To date, OPIC has supported more than $200 billion of investment in over 4,000 projects, generated an estimated $75 billion in U.S. exports and supported more than 277,000 American jobs. Visit www.opic.gov for more information.
USAID is the lead U.S. government agency providing development and humanitarian assistance to people around the world. USAID staff work in more than 100 countries furthering America's foreign policy interests in expanding democracy and free markets while also extending a helping hand to people struggling to make a better life, recover from a disaster or striving to live in a free and democratic country. USAID is South Sudan’s largest donor.
The agency's Global Development Alliance (GDA) links U.S. foreign assistance with the resources, expertise and creativity of the private sector as well as nongovernmental organizations. Since its launch in 2001, the Global Development Alliance has changed the way U.S. international development projects are financed and implemented. By cultivating more than 900 public-private alliances with over 1,700 individual partners, it has allowed USAID to leverage an additional $9.6 billion in resources for development.
For more information about USAID and its programs around the world, visit www.usaid.gov. For more information on Global Development Alliances, visit www.usaid.gov/gda/index.html.