South Sudan: The euro’s next member state?

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Euromoney prides itself on having international reach, but it seems that there is one corner of the world that our reputation hasn’t stretched to.

On a recent trip to South Sudan, the world’s newest country, a senior bank official at a local bank branch in Juba misinterpreted Euromoney’s request for an interview on the growth of the banking system there.

We were rather taken aback when our contact let on that he believed the purpose of our visit was an appeal by a European institution to introduce the euro into South Sudan. Even though the country is yet to establish a fully convertible currency, let alone do any meaningful business with Europe, the official was more than willing to stop banking operations and introduce the Euromoney representative to his entire team.

At this point, Euromoney thought it might be better to go along with the act so as not to undermine the company’s newfound popularity in the country. Or to upset the heavily armed guards at the entrance...