Kenya, Su­dan to deepen re­la­tions in oil and min­ing

The Star (Kenya) - - Politics Presidency -

Kenya and Su­dan on Sun­day signed agree­ments to deepen the two coun­tries col­lab­o­ra­tion in the oil and min­ing sec­tors.

Kenya is poised to gain from the agree­ments as Su­dan has made strides in pe­tro­leum, gas and min­ing.

Su­dan is an es­tab­lished oil ex­port­ing coun­try and has made progress in the min­eral busi­ness, with the govern­ment-owned Su­dan Gold Re­fin­ery in Khar­toum pro­duc­ing 80 tonnes of pure gold in the last one year.

Pres­i­dents Uhuru Keny­atta and Omar al-Bashir of Su­dan wit­nessed the sign­ing of the two MoUs at the Pres­i­den­tial Palace, Khar­toum.

The agree­ment on min­ing will en­hance co­op­er­a­tion for mu­tual ben­e­fit.

It also aims to strengthen co­op­er­a­tion in min­eral re­search and ex­plo­ration in­sti­tu­tions. It is ex­pected to boost Kenya’s min­eral sec­tor through the ex­change of ex­per­tise and train­ing.

Be­fore the sign­ing of the agree­ments, Uhuru was taken on a tour of the Khar­toum Re­fin­ery Com­pany. He also toured the Su­dan Gold Re­fin­ery and Cofftea Fac­tory, which im­ports and does value ad­di­tion for tea from Kenya.

More than 70 per cent of the tea con­sumed in Su­dan is pro­duced in Kenya.

Ad­dress­ing the press af­ter the sign­ing, the two pres­i­dents said Kenya and Su­dan will con­tinue to en­gage each other as neigh­bours. “Kenya and Su­dan are still neigh­bours, de­spite the fact that there is a new coun­try in-be­tween us,” Uhuru said. The two coun­tries shared a com­mon bor­der be­fore the cre­ation of South Su­dan.

Uhuru said his visit was fruit­ful and he ex­pects mu­tual gains for both coun­tries. “We also en­gaged in dis­cus­sions on re­gional mat­ters and how our two coun­tries, which are sta­ble, can con­trib­ute to more sta­bil­ity in the re­gion,” he said.

They dis­cussed how to sta­bilise South Su­dan, So­ma­lia, Bu­rundi, the Cen­tral African Repub­lic and the Demo­cratic Repub­lic of Congo.

Uhuru said the suc­cess­ful con­clu­sion of the Na­tional Di­a­logue process de­serves com­men­da­tion as it unites the coun­try. He had ear­lier in the day been briefed on the gains made by the Na­tional Di­a­logue process, whose rec­om­men­da­tions await im­ple­men­ta­tion.

The Su­danese of­fi­cials who briefed Uhuru in­cluded Sec­re­tary Gen­eral of the Na­tional Di­a­logue process Hashim Salim.

Bashir thanked Kenya for the role the coun­try played in host­ing the Naivasha talks that led to a peace­ful res­o­lu­tion of the war that raged in Su­dan for more than two decades.

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