South Sudan Oil Pipeline to Resume Operations Soon After Repairs of the February Damage

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South Sudan Oil Pipeline to Resume Operations Soon After Repairs of the February Damage

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South Sudan on the map (© Shutterstock/hyotographics)
South Sudan on the map (© Shutterstock/hyotographics)

A key South Sudan oil pipeline that ruptured during fighting in February could resume operation within the next two weeks after undergoing repair, a South Sudanese oil ministry official told Reuters News on Tuesday, May 28, 2024. 

The Petrodar pipeline, transporting roughly 100,000 barrels of South Sudan's crude oil per day over 1,500 kilometers to Sudan's Red Sea coast, sustained damage during the conflict. Built by a consortium including China's CNPC and Sinopec alongside Malaysia's Petronas, the pipeline is crucial for South Sudan's economy, accounting for 90% of its foreign exchange earnings.

While responsibility for the damage remains unclear, with Sudanese army sources blaming the rival Rapid Support Forces (RSF) who control the pump station area, the RSF has denied involvement.

"The repair is complete, but the stoppage caused some gelling," explained William Anyak Deng, an undersecretary in South Sudan's oil ministry.

Oil exports are a lifeline for South Sudan's government, and a recent 13-month conflict hampered repair efforts. Deng assured reporters that exports would resume once a wax-clearing process using hot water or diesel is completed.

China, a major player in South Sudan's oil industry, expressed continued support. "China, along with its partners, will keep offering assistance and collaboration to address any challenges that may arise," said Ma Qiang, China's ambassador to South Sudan.

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