August 30, 2017 (JUBA) – South Sudan’s parliament on Monday passed a $300 million budget, despite the civil war raging in the world’s youngest nation.
- South Sudanese MPs stand during a parliamentary session in Juba on 31 August 2011 (AFP)
The undersecretary for economic planning at the finance ministry, Wani Buyu Dyori is optimistic that more than half of the budget would be raised by the government from oil and non-oil revenues.
“The funding comes from oil revenues and non-oil revenues and the development partners, they always give us some resources for our people,” said Dyori, who acknowledged that there are obstacles.
The 2017/18 budget is 50% more than what was allocated in the previous year.
South Sudan, heavily reliant on oil revenues to fund it budget, is one of poorest countries in the world with the worst indicators on development, health and education.
The East African nation is experiencing high inflation, with severe fuel shortages, consumers queuing for hours outside fuel stations and often paying way over the new prices for black-market products.
The conflict, which broke out in 2013, has negatively impacted on the country’s citizens, including pushing the country to the brink of famine with 5.8 million people, almost half of the population—in desperate need of humanitarian assistance, according to a United Nations assessment report.
Observers say despite being oil-rich, South Sudan is likely to record negative Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth in 2017 after growing by 30.7% two years ago, largely due to the conflict, declines in its oil production and global fall in oil prices.