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Investors prefer general trading over agriculture, industry sectors: Mathok

Author: Charles Wote | Published: Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Dhieu Mathok, the Minister of Investment - Courtesy

The Minister of Investment said agriculture and industry are some of the most abandoned sectors in terms of investment in South Sudan, adding many companies prefer general trading.

Dr. Dhieu Mathok said majority of national and foreign companies prefer to invest in importing and selling of goods.

Minister Mathok said the lack of foreign and national investment in agriculture results in lack of utilization of the sector’s potential and contributes to the deteriorating economy.

“The top one which is 37, is General Trading that means many companies are just bringing and selling goods which is not good for our country,” he said.

“You can see agriculture is almost nothing and we are talking to that agriculture is the backbone of our economy yet there are no companies completely investing in agriculture.”

Speaking during the 2nd Edition of Juba Economic Forum on Tuesday, he said investment in industries also remains extremely low in the country.

“You can see also the industries; industrial investment you can see is almost small.”

In a presentation, the Minister of Investment reported General Trading and Services on the top and being undertaken by national and foreign companies.

According to Mathok, Gas and Oil are second in line, while Construction is the third sector of interest to investors.

The minister, however, assured the investors of government willingness exempt taxes on agricultural inputs entering the country.

“We in the Ministry of the investment, we are prioritizing the agriculture as the first priority you have seen the incentive which are associated with it.”

“The agriculture equipment is exempted it came up this morning as a one of the questions from you. We have ability to exempt the agriculture equipment, especially we can do that with the Ministry of Finance, we are prioritizing mining.”

Meanwhile, the Chairperson of South Sudan Chamber of Commerce calls for the connectivity of states and the national capital to ease supply of food commodities into the market.

Lado Lukak believes that constructing and rehabilitating key road networks in the country will encourage farmers to cultivate in large quantity.

“We want roads to our states to be connected because we have a problem on Yambio road, Yambio is supposed to bring for us food because Yambio has production, the road to Yambio is supposed.”

“There are maize and other produces which is supposed to be transported here, Pineapple and others and we buy from them to encourage traders and farmers there to cultivate because there is a lot of food in Yambio but there is no road to transport.”

“So, it is making our citizens to be lazy because if you cultivate this year and it is not being bought, you will say why do I work but if there is a road, food will come, and civilians will cultivate a lot.”



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