South Sudanese foreign Minister Nial Deng Nial, has held talks with his Ethiopian counterpart, Berhane Gebrekristos, to explore the possibility of joint energy projects, according to the Ethiopian foreign ministry.
South Sudan and Ethiopia agreed to enhance cooperation in the energy sector, with Ethiopia set to export electricity to South Sudan while both sides plan to construct an oil refinery inside the Ethiopia.
Ethiopia’s foreign Ministry spokesman, Dina Mufti, told state media Wednesday that the two sides agreed to boost their economic cooperation. They also agreed to cooperate politically with Ethiopia playing a key role.
Gebrekristos, who replaced Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn in an acting capacity, said Ethiopia would play a role in the efforts to boost South Sudanese relations with Khartoum.
Ethiopia is emerging as East Africa’s leading electricity power producer with a 400 megawatt export deal signed with Kenya in 2011.
Ethiopia has also signed a similar deal with Djibouti.
Ethiopia, Kenya and South Sudan agreed to jointly launch the Lamu transport corridor, which consists of pipelines, oil refineries, resort cities and the construction of a mega port in Lamu, a Kenya’s coastal town.
“The two sides discussed issues of economic cooperation,” said a statement on the foreign ministry’s official website.
The two sides were particularly keen on bilateral cooperation while insisting that cooperation between the two sides was thriving.