The Sudanese civil war, which ended in 2005 through a Comprehensive Peace Agreement, left South Sudan with 2 million dead and scores displaced. The devastation also made the country aid-dependent with virtually no functioning state structures. Although some institutions have been established in the years following the CPA, their capacity to deliver basic services remains limited. Other problems brought about by decades of war include a territorial dispute over the Abyei region, as well as disputes in wealth distribution — factors that make for a volatile peace and order situation.
As a major development partner of South Sudan, the U.K. Department for International Development recognizes the need to create sustainable peace and development as a prerequisite for progress. Frontier Economics noted that another war between Sudan and South Sudan would cost an estimated $50 billion to both countries in lost gross domestic product, an additional $25 billion to their neighboring countries, and a further $30 billion in peacekeeping and humanitarian costs to the international community.