South Sudan unveils plans to start exporting refined petroleum to East Africa Community from August

South Sudan unveils plans to start exporting refined petroleum to East Africa Community from August


South Sudan’s Bentiu Refinery is exported to start exporting refined petroleum products to the East African region by August of this year, according to the refinery’s owner SNP Group, a joint venture between South Sudan’s Nile Petroleum Corporation and Russia’s Safinat.

State-owned Nile Petroleum Corporation is controlled by South Sudan senior government officials who are close to President Slava Kiir and top military commanders.

Located in Unity State, the refinery has faced several challenges in becoming operational, including flooding, Covid-19 and technical failures. However, the refinery’s output has since come on-stream – pumping anywhere between 3,000 and 10,000 barrels per day and exporting products to neighbouring Sudan – with the group currently looking to expand regional distribution.

“[The refinery] is operational and in good shape. We have been providing products to Sudan. With the current situation in our neighbouring country, we are looking to the East African region. We have already been contacted by a number of companies in the region, as well as the Democratic Republic of Congo,” the vice president of SNP Group at South Sudan Oil & Power David Galla said on Friday at a meeting currently taking place in Juba. “By August or September, the product will be ready to be shipped across the region.”

This milestone would be significant for South Sudan, who despite having the third-largest oil reserves in sub-Saharan Africa, has suffered from limited refining capacity to date and imports the majority of its local refined oil demand.

The viability of these plans is supported by the high quality of production from the refinery, of which “70 per cent has close to zero sulfur content. This is very rare,” noted Galla.

SNP Group is also seeking to build an internal market for its low-sulfur, heavy fuel oil, which could be used to generate power, stimulate industry and reduce local costs of power consumption.

SSOP is organised by Energy Capital & Power in partnership with the Ministry of Petroleum, South Sudan to unite the country’s energy stakeholders with global investors to discuss opportunities within the burgeoning industry.

  • A Tell report
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