South Sudan has taken a significant step in enhancing its climate-induced disaster preparedness and response capabilities by signing the African Risk Capacity (ARC) Treaty.
The move demonstrates South Sudan’s commitment to building resilience and reducing its vulnerability to climate-related risks, the African Union (AU) says.
The country has recently been facing some socio-economic challenges which are compounded by the impacts of climate change, prompting its government to begin engaging ARC to explore new approaches to strengthen its national Disaster Risk Management efforts.
Last Monday, South Sudan signed the ARC Establishment Agreement in Addis Ababa, making it the 39th AU Member State to do so, according to the African Union.
The signing ceremony was attended by its Government Officials, including Ambassador Dr. Riek Puok Riek from the Foreign Ministry.
Ambassador Riek underscored that his country’s engagement with ARC was driven by the need for proactive strategies to address drought and flood risks, which pose significant threats to the national economy.
In addition to being a signatory to the ARC Treaty, South Sudan is expected to sign the ARC Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) at the ongoing CoP28 summit in Duba. This gives the East African nation access to ARC’s products and tools for strengthening its Disaster Risk Reduction capacities.
The signing of the ARC Treaty and MOU establishes a framework for cooperation which involves training support to South Sudan’s institutions, and its potential participation in ARC insurance risk pools covering droughts, floods as well as outbreaks and epidemics.
“Together, we can intensify our effort and complement existing strategies,” Ibrahima Cheikh Diong, ARC Group Director-General, said.
The ARC Group, composed of ARC Agency, a Specialized Agency of the AU, and ARC Limited, the insurance affiliate of the Group, offers capacity building, contingency plans, risk profiling and risk pooling services as its value proposition. Its mandate from AU is to work with its Member States to help them plan, prepare, and respond to climate threats.
This partnership will also allow South Sudan to benefit from the African Climate Risk Insurance Facility (ACRIF) -, an African Development Bank initiative designed to enable effective response to climate change.