Political Science Paper on Oil in Sudan

Oil in Sudan


Over the past few years, societies have developed unquenchable desire for oil. Despite the numerous researches over the years, no suitable and reliable alternative have been discovered. Oil provides not only energy, but also power of influence economically and politically. Oil is a major factor in claiming and retaining political governance and control. As a raw material, it is required in the manufacture of food, construction of infrastructure and improving technology. Generally, oil lubricates the mechanisms used in the national and international politics. This is why it has become a major source of conflicts globally with individuals, governments and business entities continuous fighting to gain control of oil resources such as oil fields and pipelines.

Oil plays a key role in almost every phase of human lives; from technology to transport, food production and is necessary for business survival. Oil is distinctive in that; although there may be several alternative energy provisions available for some industrialized jobs such as creating electricity, there is currently no practical substitute for oil especially when it comes to transportation industry (Kobrin, 2003). With the increasing in global consumption of oil, the global oil reserves are gradually reducing at an exponentially rate. The number of unexploited oil reserves are decreasing with each year while the oil wells that are currently being exploited are decreasing too. There is presently less oil accessible to us than there was just a few years ago.

In the 19th century, the amount of coal used accounted for was 55% of the whole world’s energy use whereas oil and natural gas contributed a mere 3% of the world’s energies. A century later, coal is providing only 25% of the world’s energy, natural gas has increased to 23% and oil reigns highest at just 40% of all energies. In the year 2000, demand for oil was about 75 million barrels per day which is a smaller amount than ten years later, the International Energy Agency presently computes that the global desire for crude oil will essentially double or triple by the year 2030 (Kobrin, 2003). Aeroplanes, trains and other automobiles, they all rely on oil for transportation. Over the years we have seen several on the global scene due to oil rights. While some of these conflicts have been subdued by quid pro quo agreements, others have been handled through sanctions, United Nations condemnations and in some cases, the atatcks are not quelled and turn into full blown wars (Jakobson & Daojiong, 2006).

All through the history, there have been many, seriously argumentative conflicts about oil involving the United States, Russia, Turkey, Britain, Germany, Norway, The Netherlands, France, Italy, Japan, Saudi Arabia, Iran, United Arab Emirates, Afghanistan, Kuwait, Iraq, Mexico, Venezuela, Indonesia, Nigeria, Algeria, Libya and Sudan, just to mention some of the numerous supreme countries and geographical places that have found motives to originate to probabilities and on other case to arms over oil (Jakobson & Daojiong, 2006). Many of the utmost wealthy countries tend to be the countries that have through preparations to steadily receive large provisions of life giving oil, at sensibly low oil charges, for a lengthy period of time. These individuals that have quite logical do not want to move on lacking and will frequently be keen to use any kind political power they find required guarding their position of eminence. On the other side hand, higher oil charges have also helped to bring superior political permanence and affluence to several regions around the globe. Some of these places, include Mexico, Columbia, Venezuela, China, India, several of the Persian Gulf States, Russia, Asia and places of the continent of Africa, mainly Nigeria and Sudan who are just receiving their first perceptions of the respectable life and are quickly emerging as strong partiality to the taste (Nam & Wang, 2015).

Everything from a nation’s economy and currency conversion rate to their people’s over-all have a sense of security and political permanence seem to center unsteadily on what has come to be known as the Black Liquid Gold. The political accomplishment or failure of any ruling government and the very existence of its people is intensely affected, not only by the mere ownership of oil, but by successfully regulating the prices of this all-important fuel. One item that almost all administrations seem to approve upon is the significance of preserving stability in both the marketplace and capability of oil to reach the energy thirsty countries that it obliges. In the meantime, there are durable protagonists of various political programs hoping to change the scenery of various areas, whether they are representatives of democracy, reversions to the days of Communism and Socialism or an ever-increasing Worldwide Industrialism that cuts across all borders and people (Jakobson & Daojiong, 2006).

The assessment and exploitation of oil in Sudan has enhanced economic growth and the organizational conversion of the economy in recent times. According to the World Bank, Sudan is one of the latest major oil producing nations in the World, and the third major oil producer in Sub-Saharan Africa next to Nigeria and Angola. As an outcome of oil exploitation, the organization of the Sudanese budget has moved from being mainly dependent on agriculture to oil. In the past years, the increasing dependency on oil has led to steady economic growth. Therefore, Sudan’s actual economic growth be an average of around 9% during the year 2005-2006, which placed Sudan amongst the fastest developing economies in Africa (Nam & Wang, 2015). However, while oil has lately contributed to the development of economic enactment and foreign direct investment in Sudan, the heavy reliance on oil gives challenges to legislators, partly since oil is an exhaustible resource and, mostly because the income from oil is undefined and very unpredictable in global markets. Furthermore, the growing dependence on oil rises question on how long the Sudanese people will have to produce oil. The influence of oil on economic growth in the Sudan draws some recent macroeconomic pointers on the presentation of the economy and convinced organizational shifts, that oil has had a varied blessing for Sudan (Kobrin, 2003).

The political background in Sudan is described as a long past of political uncertainty, ongoing civil wars and the intricate north-south war. Even after the latest freedom of Southern Sudan, Sudan still undergoes political uncertainties, a lack of comprehensive organizations and a lack of an assurance to realizing long run justifiable and stable economic growth plans. The overall socio-economic features of Sudan specify great range between Sudan equated to other African and other Arab nations in terms of population, average of economic growth demarcated by GDP per capita and human growth. On average, Sudan has a high population attached with a lower standard of economic growth. Sudan has a continuous agony from macro-economic uncertainty, high degrees of poverty, joblessness and debt (Lindsay, 2015). The organization of the Sudanese budget has long been categorized by a small portion of industry, particularly manufacturing; a high portion of agriculture and service segments in GDP and occupation. Sudan began distributing oil in the year 1999 and since then has developed gradually reliant on oil exports to the magnitude that the economy has curved into an oil reliant economy. The application of macro-economic reorganizations along with the constructive influence of oil to the Sudan economy has triggered a rapid growth in actual economic growth. Therefore, Sudan has progressed from a low returns economy into a lower average income economy bestowing to World Bank cataloguing. But although the increasing reliance on oil has had more or less positive belongings, it has also ignited a number of adverse impacts (Lindsay, 2015).

The main oil production wells are situated in Southern Sudan but the key oil refineries, ports and pipelines are found in the northern Sudan. Due to this encounter, oil exploration has typically remained restricted to the central and south-central areas of Sudan. The official arrangement of the oil segment in Sudan shows that the oil industry is controlled by the Ministry of Energy and mining, however the Ministry of Finance and National Economy and National Petroleum Commission are also tangled. The Sudanese oil segment comprises of numerous foreign international oil corporations with an extensive history of capitalizing on oil exploration and production in Sudan. The foreign companies involved in the Sudan’s oil segment are from Asia which are organized by the Greater Nile Petroleum Operating Companies (GNPC) led by the China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC), which has the major single part in the GNPC confederation with 40%; shadowed by Malaysia’s PETRONAS owing 30%; India’s Oil and Natural Gas Corporation owning 25%, and the Sudanese Government’s SudaPet company with a 5% (Nam & Wang, 2015).

Oil has chances for developing the Sudan by supporting domestic social, political and economic sovereignty and accomplishment of self-sufficiency. Oil can increase government resources, incomes and expenditure, economic development foreign skills, stability of trade, balance of compensation. It can be used a positive tool to bring social change in Sudan through diplomat relations and cultural exchanges. Starting with the influence of local production of oil formed significantly by positive things and chances by empowering Sudan to advance self-sufficiency in oil by sustaining domestic demand. The positive influence of oil on government economic resources is perceived from the growing share of the Sudanese government in oil incomes from conglomerates with foreign oil producing enterprises in Sudan. For example, the increase in oil production has directed to a speedy continuous growth in the portion of the Sudanese government in total oil production and incomes from 23% in 2000 to 75% in 2005. The share deteriorated to 56.7% in 2009 but due to the deterioration in oil prices related to the global economic emergency of 2009. Oil has shaped an affirmative impact on overseas trade as supposed from the capacity and organization of exports and stability of trade (Lindsay, 2015). Oil has led gross domestic product (GDP) to a significant positive effect as perceived from the effect of oil in the organization of the Sudanese budget and macro-economic pointers as measured by the share of oil in GDP, its growing rate and its composition. oil enables Sudan to emerge as one of the highest recipients of foreign trade and it regarding the impact of oil in improving capacity building, that it may be valuable to proceed from the examination of general even approach of probing only the macro-economic influence of oil, and to use an extra in-depth enquiry to examine the outcome of production and export of oil and other natural resource based on exports and capacity building not excluding education, training, science and technology and research and development, infrastructure and the progression and development course of the Sudanese economy.

The negative influence of oil and the challenges for development in Sudan include the high insecurity, impulsiveness and risk of reliance on unstable oil prices in the global market, unstrained oil incomes; the lack of expansion, and potential future of Sudan-Southern Sudan relations. The first trial connected to oil is that the actual economic action is presently high, but the lack of economic divergence raises anxieties over longer term causes of growth and continued development, thus variation towards non-oil exports is vital for long-run viable development plans (Lindsay, 2015). To tolerate growth and offer broader income prospects, Sudan will be required to pursue a plan of spreading its sources of development, including improving its non-oil exports like the traditional agricultural exports that have delivered export earnings. Another encounter is that oil incomes enter the economy mainly through public finance passages, of which they yield significant instability for economic policy.


No one can certainly know what to expect in the future, but one thing is unquestionably certain. Oil will play a key role in influencing the geopolitical make-up of this world. Whether the global game being played is founded on economics as in monopoly or world power by way of military prowess, such as in jeopardy of the one mutual factor will be the oil that lubricates the steering wheel of development toward wealth and political power. oil has formed several positive effects and prospects for growth in Sudan these comprise of the impact of oil in sustaining domestic claims and realization of self-sufficiency, accumulative government resources, incomes and expenditure, economic development, foreign trade in capacity and arrangement of exports, stability of trade, balance of compensation, foreign undeviating venture and social improvement in Sudan. It can be used as a positive tool for improving cohesion and unity among citizens through fair distribution of oil revenues and building of important facilities such as hospitals and school. Through oil trade, the country can improve its international diplomatic relations and bring social change through global cultural exchange. However, these have rarely been achieved.

The negative influence of oil and the challenges of growth in Sudan include the instability and risk of reliance on highly inconsistent oil prices in the global market; unjustifiable oil incomes; the lack of divergence; and the encounters of potential future Sudan-Southern Sudan skirmishes. Consequently, the main policy consequence from the outcomes is that the implementation of long-run viable growth and expansion plans in Sudan needs various bases of growth, which should include stimulating and increasing non-oil exports, particularly traditional agricultural exports.


Jakobson, L. & Daojiong, Z. (2006). China and the worldwide search for oil security. Asia-Pacific Review13(2), 60-73.

Kobrin, S. J. (2003). Oil and politics: talisman energy and Sudan. NYUJ Int’l. L. & Pol.36, 425.

Lindsay, J. (2015). A Special HART Report into The Arms Trade and Sudan Uncovering the Major Arms Exporters and the Human Rights Abuses They Support.

Nam, D. & Wang, J. (2015). The effects of surprise and anticipated technology changes on international relative prices and trade. Journal of International Economics97(1), 162-177.