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Sudan announces 15 month austerity programme

Sudan announces 15 month austerity programme

Sudan

Sudan is heading towards an emergency reform plan in order to revive its ailing economy.

Prime Minister Moataz Moussa announced to parliament of the 15-month emergency economic-reform plan on Wednesday. It also includes further austerity measures.

The measures include slashing all tax exemptions except for materials needed for production, withdrawing some vehicles provided to officials, among others.

The aim of the program is to restore the implementation of the budget of 2018

“The aim of the program is to restore the implementation of the budget of 2018 to assist the performance in 2019 to achieve its objectives of economic stability by reducing the average rate of inflation, stabilizing the exchange rate and achieving a real GDP growth rate of 4%,” said Moussa

The prime minister also highlighted plans to establish a commodity exchange for gold and currencies.

The country’s economy has been struggling since the south seceded in 2011, taking a huge share of oil, once a major export.

It has also been enduring miserable economic conditions in recent months despite hopes last year that the lifting of US sanctions in place since 1997 would boost the country’s fortunes.

The government has been trying to slash expenditures as it continues to grapple with an acute foreign exchange shortage and inflation above 65 per cent for several months.

The central bank has twice devalued the Sudan pound this year. The pound currently trades at 41 to the dollar on the black market, while the official rate is 28 to the dollar.

In September president Omar al Bashir cut the number of ministries. He also announced his second major government reshuffle in the space of four months, a move aimed at fixing a crisis-hit economy.

Bashir also pledged to tackle corruption and reform the national economy, promising more subsidies for the poorest, increased productivity and revenues, and finance for agricultural schemes.

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