South Sudan will soon go without the services of MTN, one of the Africa’s largest phone services company. According to a statement from the company, MTN has said that it is going to cut down jobs as well as halt any expansion plans in South Sudan due to the ongoing war.
According to the new plans, the number of jobs will now be reduced from the current 170 to 80 while the plans to build 40 communication towers in the country have been stopped. MTN was the first company to venture into South Sudan when the country was still at her maiden days of independence and invested close to 170 million US Dollars for the past two years but ever since the company has never seen any profit.
South Sudan is now headed to the dogs due to the ongoing war that broke up when the current head of State Salver Kiir differed with his vice president then, Riek Machar. Just two years into her independence and the war broke up dismantling all the new infrastructures that had been put in place. In South Sudan at the moment according to many global economic analysts, there is a huge decrease in the customer base and many South Sudanese have to choose between buying a phone, buying airtime or buying food. The majority have opted for food leaving the telecommunication industry into a limbo.
MTN now has close to one million subscribers in South Sudan but the management says that the subscription has reduced by more than 10 percent. In the recent months, South Sudan, which is rich in producing oil has seen her currency collapsing in terms of value for more than 100 percent driving it towards one of the most useless currency in the world. According to the IMF, the economy of South Sudan, if the war goes on, is likely to collapse by 5.3 percent. South Sudan is third in terms of largest crude oil in the Sub-Saharan Africa with more than 160,000 barrels per day.
Most banks in Kenya made huge losses in terms of general profits on the South Sudan market due to the devaluation of the currency with most banks indicating the intention to sell part or whole of their assets in South Sudan.
Article by Juma Fred.