S.Sudan says renegotiating oil deal with Sudan

In this file photo taken on February 28, 2015 shows spent munitions lying on the ground at an abandoned oil treatment facility at Thar Jath in Unity State, South Sudan. (AFP)
Updated 07 October 2019

S.Sudan says renegotiating oil deal with Sudan

  • South Sudan and Sudan in 2012 signed a deal in which Juba would pay the amount after it voted for independence
  • Talks on extending the deadline would start by the end of October

JUBA: South Sudan said Monday it was renegotiating an oil deal with Khartoum, as it will not meet a December deadline to finish paying $3 billion (2.7 billion euros) agreed as compensation for the oil-rich nation's 2011 secession.
South Sudan and Sudan in 2012 signed a deal in which Juba would pay the amount after it voted for independence, taking with it 70 percent of the oil fields Khartoum used to manage.
Petroleum Minister Awou Daniel Chuang told journalists that the cash-strapped nation had paid $2.4 billion so far, but would not manage to pay the remaining $600 million by December.
"As the contract expires we should be able to extend (the deadline) because we cannot run operations in a vacuum. This agreement is what governs the fees that we pay to Sudan," he said.
He said talks on extending the deadline would start by the end of October, adding that a team from Juba was already in Khartoum working on the issue.
Chuang said the money was paid back by deducting $15 from each barrel of oil from South Sudan -- which is processed in Sudan's refineries.
However years of fighting crippled oil production and payments fell behind.
South Sudan plunged into war in 2013 after President Salva Kiir accused his former vice president Riek Machar of plotting a coup.
Multiple attempts at peace have failed but in September 2018 the warring parties signed an agreement to form a unity government, which would see Machar return to government as vice president.
However the formation of a unity government has been dogged by delays, and the new deadline for its formation is November 12.
At its peak, oil production in South Sudan was at 350,000 barrels a day. Since the signing of a peace deal in September 2018, production has increased from 135,000 to 178,000 barrels a day.


Nvidia deal for Arm will drive computing power growth, says SoftBank’s CEO

Updated 23 October 2020

Nvidia deal for Arm will drive computing power growth, says SoftBank’s CEO

  • Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund (PIF) is an anchor investor in the $100 billion Vision Fund

TOKYO/DUBAI: SoftBank Group Corp. CEO Masayoshi Son said on Thursday the sale of chip designer Arm to Nvidia Corp. will drive growth in computing power, in his first public comments since the $40 billion deal was announced in September.
Son made the comments at a virtual summit about artificial intelligence hosted by Saudi Arabia, an anchor investor in the $100 billion Vision Fund, at which he reiterated his belief that AI would transform society.
The Nvidia deal, part of a series of asset sales by Son, whose group has been shaken by soured investments and the COVID-19 pandemic, has raised concerns it will threaten Arm’s role as a neutral supplier in the industry.
Son is set to speak next week with Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang at SoftBank World, the group’s annual event for customers and suppliers that is being retooled as it focuses on investing.
SoftBank’s growing cash pile is driving speculation about future investment plans, with the Vision Fund targeting external funding for a blank-check company, a source said, in a sign the group is regaining its mojo.
“I am a risk taker,” Son said on Thursday.
Rajeev Misra, CEO of SoftBank Investment Advisers which oversees the Vision Fund, said the market share gained by online commerce companies in the last six to eight months is more than what they gained in the previous four years put together.
“COVID has accelerated the acceleration of AI even further,” Misra told the same conference, adding in the 105 companies Vision Fund 1 and 2 have invested in, artificial intelligence is the core of their businesses.