For a few countries the lifeblood is oil, but it brings almost as many problems as it does benefits. Sudan is a country with vast oilfields in the south generating billions of dollars which are supposed to be shared even if Sudan is separated by January's referendum. Of course that could easily be a tipping point for a country that has been tearing itself apart for most of its existence. And so a deal has been struck to guarantee the flow of Sudan's oil to the outside world, and as such the flow of money into the country. But why can an agreement be reached so easily over oil, when so many other threatening issues remained unresolved? Joining the programme are Mohamed Ibrahim Shoush, a Sudan analyst from the Sudanese embassy here in Doha, Hamdi Abdul Rahman, a professor of political science from the University of Cairo, and Nico Plooijen of the European Coalition on Oil in Sudan.
This episode of Inside Story aired from Tuesday, December 7, 2010.