NAIROBI, April 13 South Sudan said Toyota Tsusho
would soon make a financial proposal on the
construction of a pipeline to transport the country's oil to a
port in Kenya for export, after the Japanese firm completed a
In January, South Sudan signed an agreement with
neighbouring Kenya, the region's largest economy, to build the
pipeline to connect its oil fields with the Kenyan port of Lamu,
which is under construction.
Landlocked South Sudan seceded from Sudan last year, but the
two countries are fighting over a vital oilfield on their border
after tensions rose following a dispute over how much the Juba
government should pay to transport its oil output through Sudan
to Djibouti's Red Sea port.
Speaking in Nairobi, Pagan Amum, South Sudan's lead
negotiator in talks to resolve the dispute with Sudan, said
Toyota Tsusho was expected to begin putting together a financial
package for the pipeline, the cost of which has yet to be made
"Toyota Tsusho of Japan has completed feasibility studies
for the building of the pipeline to Lamu and are putting
together a financial proposal to begin construction of the
pipeline," Amum told a news conference.
South Sudan is also considering building another pipeline
through Ethiopia and Djibouti as well as using trucks to move
crude to the port of Mombasa.
South Sudan shut its roughly 350,000 barrel-per-day oil
output in January in a row over how much it should pay to export
crude via pipelines and facilities in Sudan.
Oil accounted for about 98 percent of the new nation's state
revenues, and officials have been scrambling for ways to make up
for the loss.
China is the biggest buyer of oil from Sudan and South
Sudan, purchasing some 12.99 million barrels last year. That
amounted to 5 percent of last year's crude imports by China,
which is also the top investor in South Sudan's oilfields.
(Reporting by Yara Bayoumy; Writing by George Obulutsa; Editing
by James Macharia)