Given that South Sudan is not a signatory to the 1951 convention, access for PoCs is limited. However, the GoSS legislated 2 key policies for a regulatory framework in 2011 and 2012 to promote refugee protection and enable PoCs access to basic services. Currently PoCs pay formal taxes to be able to operate in the labour market largely referred to as market fees. However, the manner in which permits are provided are not structured, legal and informal taxation remains ad-hoc. Conditions under which persons of concern negotiate their access to markets including labour markets is varied and changes depending on who controls markets at any particular time. This is largely brought about by weak government institutions and overall political instability. Refugees have the right to work however this faces contextual challenges as access can be limited depending on a variety of factors.

There are 263,000 PoCs in the country mostly from Sudan, DRC, CAR and Ethiopia. Most markets are saturated and offer few opportunities with limited supply and low purchasing power. However, the GoSS has allocated significant land to PoCs for agricultural purposes. While receptive to PoCs, most nationals dominate trading, with agriculture being the most sustainable form of maintain livelihoods. However, farming is typically for consumption and only 25% of PoCs sell their produce on the market. South Sudan has a population of around 10 million of which the majority are rural based. Most nationals rely on subsistence farming and animal husbandry for their livelihoods. 

South Sudan has arable and grazing land and numerous natural resources including water, oil and timber. Despite the countries resources, South Sudan is one of the poorest countries in the world. South Sudan is reliant on oil comprising 98% of the country’s total exports 80% of the country’s GDP. However, oil revenues are declining and internal political instability has led to 20% of nationals having to flee their homes. Due to conflict, market infrastructures and community stocks have been destroyed and most traders have been displaced. Many parts of the country rely on cargo aircraft bringing in supplies from neighboring countries such as Uganda and Ethiopia. Additionally, most of the workforce lack marketable skills for wage earning employment due to lack of education and training, prohibiting the economic prosperity of the country.

Country Response