This research is part of the project titled Enhancing Knowledge on Remittances and Diaspora Engagement in South Sudan, funded by the IOM Development Fund and managed by IOM South Sudan, in partnership with the Government of South Sudan’s Ministry of Finance and Planning, BSS and Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation. The objective of the study was to fill the knowledge gap on remittances in and to South Sudan, and address policy recommendations on where the Government of South Sudan could make policy guidance to enhance migrant remittances and diaspora engagement. To this aim, the research analysed the Australia–South Sudan corridor.
Through the transfer of money, goods and knowledge, diasporas – people living out of their homeland, but still being strongly attached to it – participate in the economic, political and cultural support of the origin country. The mobilized resources are fundamental as emergency response and development contribution, especially for fragile countries. South Sudanese remittance recipients are largely dependent on migrants’ help to face the consequences of forced migration, displacement and extreme poverty. Enabling the way remittances are sent, received and managed can influence on the possibility to reach vulnerable persons, especially in more remote and isolated areas, improve their life conditions and access financial services, reinforcing the process of financial inclusion in South Sudan. Moreover, the diaspora in Australia – that is very fragmented and faces economic and social difficulties – not only constantly responds to monetary family needs as a moral obligation, but is also crucial in areas of education, health and infrastructures for the communities of origin. Efforts to improve the remittance environment in South Sudan and engage its diaspora from Australia face critical challenges mostly due to the current uncertain political situation and conflict risks in the country. This hampers the trust from the diaspora and its willingness to further contribute or invest.
The Government of South Sudan started a process of developing a comprehensive migration policy, including the migration and development pillar. An articulated long-term process is needed to make South Sudan a diaspora and remittancefriendly environment, reinforcing the role of the Government and the private sector as environment enablers in maximizing the development potential of remittances and mobilizing migrants’ skills and expertise.
Based on an extended qualitative and quantitative analysis of the context of remittances to South Sudan and of the diaspora profile and engagement from Australia, this study aims at helping the Government of South Sudan to take evidence-based decisions