South Africa based Centurion Law Group has announced a step into the world’s newest - and perhaps riskiest - jurisdiction with a partnership in South Sudan. The firm said the deal with South Sudanese practice Awatkeer Law Chambers would serve businesses, government and non-governmental organizations in the UN’s newest member state.

The Republic of South Sudan achieved independence from Sudan in 2011 after decades of war. However it has been plagued by internal violence since 2013. The UK government, which has just announced a £100m aid package to South Sudan and Somalia, advises against all travel to the country. 

Centurion said it would be the first international law firm to offer a full suite of legal services in South Sudan with local and international lawyers, combining the established local presence and network of Awatkeer with Centurion’s pan-African reach and respected energy practice group. The agreement also includes training of South Sudanese lawyers.

Anuol Deng Kuoreng, managing partner of Awatkeer, said: ’South Sudan’s economic potential is huge, and it’s through partnerships like this that we can advance a pro business agenda in our young nation. Quality legal services put us on an equal footing with neighboring East African countries and help us attract much needed investment.’

Awatkeer Law Chambers was established in 2012 and has 17 lawyers based in Juba, South Sudan. Centurion Law Group is headquartered in Johannesburg, and has offices in Equatorial Guinea, Cameroon, Mauritius, and Ghana.