29 November 2011
The United States will host the International Engagement Conference for South Sudan December 14–15 in Washington to honor the new nation and begin a development and investment dialogue with the government of South Sudan.
The conference will outline South Sudan’s strategic development priorities and highlight opportunities for engagement with public- and private-sector partners, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) said in a November 28 press release.
The conference will include officials from South Sudan, the United States, the United Kingdom, Norway, Turkey, the European Union, the United Nations, the African Union, the World Bank, the International Finance Corporation, the Corporate Council on Africa and InterAction.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah are scheduled to speak, as are foreign officials, development ministers, and private-sector and leaders of nongovernmental organizations.
The conference builds on the U.S. government’s long partnership with the people of what is now South Sudan. “As the lead donor of humanitarian and development assistance for decades, the United States has helped to support the people of South Sudan” as they work to build their nation, USAID said. South Sudan became an independent country on July 9, 2011.
The first day of the conference will focus on the development and policy priorities of the government of South Sudan. President Salva Kiir will articulate his vision for the development of his country, and Clinton will outline the U.S. government’s commitment to South Sudan and its ability to meet its development challenges.
Government, private-sector and civil-society members will discuss issues including the managing of oil revenues, delivering social services such as education and health care, strengthening government institutions, and building the country’s human capital, USAID said.
The second day of the conference will focus on private-sector and investment opportunities in South Sudan, in line with the priorities of the government. This will include discussions of high-priority sectors such as oil and renewable energy, agriculture and communications technology, USAID said.