South Sudan gained independence from Sudan in 2011, making it the youngest state in the world. After decolonisation in 1956, the mostly Christian South Sudan was joined with the predominantly Islamic North Sudan. This was due to a decision by the then colonial power of the United Kingdom and North Sudan without consulting the representatives of the South. Today, South Sudan, with around 11 million people, unites numerous people. Its official language is English. Oil is one of the country’s most important mineral resources, but extraction is difficult and income does not benefit the broader population.
The great hopes associated with independence were bitterly disappointed: the past decade has been characterised by violence and humanitarian crises. Since 2013, hundreds of thousands of people have died in a civil war, 2.3 million have fled the country and another 2 million are internally displaced. Despite an official peace agreement, armed conflict and violence continue to occur, including against civilians. Hunger and malnutrition are widespread. Overall, state structures are very weak. Dependence on humanitarian aid is very high. The vast majority of children do not attend school. The impacts of climate change are destroying the livelihoods of large sections of the population.
On behalf of the German Federal Government, KfW is financing projects to improve the very difficult living conditions, particularly in the area of
On behalf of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), KfW is financing a multi-year programme to combat poverty and strengthen resilience. The project is being carried out jointly by the UNICEF Children’s Fund and the World Food Programme (WFP). The aim is to provide better access to primary education, health care (vaccinations, construction of health stations) and food.
Hygienically safe drinking water is as hard to find in South Sudan as basic sanitation. KfW is financing the development of a water supply and sanitation system for around 200,000 people. The aim is to reduce mortality by reducing diseases caused by contaminated water, such as cholera, hepatitis A and diarrhoea. For women and girls, safe and separate sanitation facilities in schools or health centres, for example, mean that they are better protected against gender-based violence such as sexual assault, rape and serious bodily injury. KfW also promotes psychosocial support programmes for survivors of gender-specific and sexual violence.
On behalf of the German Federal Government, KfW is also working with the French non-governmental organisation Agence d’Aide à la Coopération Technique et au Développement (ACTED) in South Sudan to improve the livelihoods of internally displaced persons and returnees from neighbouring countries.
KfW projects address the basic needs of people in South Sudan, while the development and establishment of sustainable structures remains a major challenge.