Sudan Declares Emergency as Pound Plunges

  • The drop has had a devastating effect on traders in the country.
  • Bashir’s government tried on numerous occasions to crack down on the illegal traders to no avail.
  • The declaration comes days after the country declared a state of emergency across the country following floods.

Sudan has declared a state of economic emergency after a sharp fall in its currency. It is alleged that the pound has declined in value due manipulation by those opposed to the transitional government. On Wednesday, it was reported that the Sudanese pound was trading at 240 per US dollar on the parallel market.

A currency trader in Sudan.

“What is happening is a systematic operation to vandalise the Sudanese government, choke the transitional government, and we will not relent or be complacent,” said Mohamed Ali, the acting finance minister.

The drop has had a devastating effect on traders in the country. Most of the shops in the capital, Khartoum, have since been closed. The transitional government has stated that it will set up special courts to charge those found culpable of systematic vandalization of the economy.

The government is also set to criminalize the sale, purchase, and possession of smuggled gold and precious minerals. The transitional government, which came to power last year after Omar Al Bashir was removed from office, has been faced by lots of challenges. The transitional government comprises of civilian and military officials.

The black market trade has thrived over the years in the country. Bashir’s government tried on numerous occasions to crack down on the illegal traders to no avail. It also had subsidies on fuel, gas, and essential medicine— something the experts have argued that has burdened the country’s economy over the years.

During this time, commodities like bread could not be afforded by most people. Experts have warned of a lot of financial pressures on households due to soaring inflation and subsidies that drain the public funds. The country’s economy is said to have contracted by 2.5 percent in 2019, and 2.3 percent in 2018.

The country also suffered a blow in 2011, after South Sudan broke away, taking with is it most the country oil wealth. Sudan remained with an oil refinery that could only meet a small portion of the country’s oil needs.

People walking through flood waters in Sudan.

During Bashir’s tenure the county had been named as a state sponsor of terrorism, a move that has over the years prevented it from getting grants and donations from the International Monetary Funds and World Bank.

However, its leaders are optimistic that with the transitional government in place, the country might be removed from the list. It will be a major move, considering the current economic status of the country.

The declaration comes days after the country declared a state of emergency across the country following floods that have wreaked havoc in the recent days. Reports indicate that around 100 people have been killed by the floods in the southern part of Khartoum.

Experts have stated that an archaeological site in the country is under threat by the floods. Currently, sandbag walls have been set up to help pump out water in an effort to prevent further damage in the Al-Bajrawiya.

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Juliet Norah

I am a freelance journalist is passionate about news. I derive pleasure in informing people about the happenings in the world

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