During a meeting with Egypt’s Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly on Monday, South Sudan Irrigation Minister Manawa Peter Gatkuoth conveyed his country’s appreciation of Egypt’s support to the people of South Sudan during the flood crisis.
Gatkuoth also thanked Egypt for launching an air bridge during the crisis to transport to South Sudan important humanitarian aid, the Egyptian cabinet’s spokesman said in a statement on Monday.
He affirmed Egypt's efforts to support South Sudan came in light of the brotherly relations between the two peoples.
The meeting was attended by Egypt's Minister of Irrigation and Water Resources Mohamed Abdel-Aty.
Torrential rain and floods earlier this year hit South Sudan and submerged many villages and livestock and displaced over 600,000 people since July. The floods were described by the UN as the worst in 60 years.
The South Sudanese minister also praised Egypt’s establishment of technical schools in South Sudan that have qualified students for the job market, as well as the decision to increase the number of scholarships for students of ٍSouth Sudan to study in Egypt.
He expressed his aspiration for further Egyptian support of other South Sudanese students in the country and in Egypt, who receive education at their own expense, especially as the coronavirus implications have affected their income.
Gatkuoth said he wants to enhance cooperation with Egypt and to benefit from the Egyptian experience and distinguished cadres in capacity-building and the establishment of Egyptian investment projects in agriculture, irrigation, electricity and other infrastructure fields.
The minister also requested that Egypt opens a branch of one of its banks in South Sudan, particularly the National Bank of Egypt (NBE).
Gatkuoth called for forming a joint high committee with Egypt.
Prime Minister Madbouly affirmed during the meeting that Egypt will spare no effort to support South Sudanese people in the fields mentioned by the minister, mainly supporting South Sudanese students in Egypt, based on President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi’s directives to support foreign students residing in the country.
Madbouly also expressed Egypt’s willingness to establish investment projects needed in South Sudan.
The prime minister urged coordination with the Egyptian Foreign Ministry to accelerate efforts to form the joint high committee and to hold its first meeting in Cairo before the end of this year.
Concerning the request to open a bank branch in South Sudan, Madbouly said the Governor of the Central Bank of Egypt would be contacted to submit the request to open a branch of the NBE there.