South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir and Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Friday on bilateral trade, borders and military cooperation.
Speaking on Friday after the signing ceremony at the State House, President Salva Kiir said that the agreement will benefit the two countries and he’s hopeful that many things will change soon.
“We have discussed very important issues and especially the bilateral issues and we have signed several MoUs and these are things to be implemented. We have agreed on security issues that we will not allow any negative force to use our territory to launch hostile activities on the other,” Kiir said.
Kiir added that the agreements will improve roads from Ethiopia to South Sudan. He stressed that South Sudan will build a refinery in the near future and Ethiopia will also benefit from the oil.
The two leaders discussed building roads and bridges in Gambella-Joukou, Nasir, Malakal roads. Dima, Raad Boma, Bor roads, and the third one is Pagak, Maiwut, Paluoch road, and finally Tergol, Akobo, Ayod roads.
“Upon signing the MOU, the Government of the Republic of South Sudan shall immediately provide the required engineering data and any relevant information for the implementation if these projects,” the communiqué stated.
For his part, Hailemariam Desalegn reassured the commitment of his government to help in implementing the peace agreement. “We are very keen to see South Sudan be a peaceful country and a prosperous country… because we believe that the South Sudanese people have suffered enough for half a century and peace should prevail in South Sudan.”
“We will not support an armed struggling group or anyone who opts for path of war and therefore we will not allow any armed movement which is detracting from peace in our region both in Ethiopia and South Sudan and will cooperate in a strong army-to-army cooperation where the president has agreed to send his chief of staff quickly to Addis Ababa and they will agree on the common cooperation of making our borders and also inland secure,” said the Ethiopian premier.
He pointed out as well later, “We also agreed on protection of investment and promotion of investment in our two countries where South Sudanese investors can freely invest in Ethiopia and equally also Ethiopian investors can invest in South Sudan,” Desalegn said.
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