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19% of Sudanese unemployed: Ministry

July 18 - 2017 KHARTOUM
Street in Port Sudan in 2010 (
Street in Port Sudan in 2010 (

Fewer Sudanese are unemployed, according to the Ministry of Development and Human Resources. Pharmacists expect a medicine shortage as imports are halted because of the skyrocketing US Dollar.

The number of unemployed Sudanese or those looking for work is two million, which constitutes 19 % of the productive labour force, minister El Sadig El Hadi El Mahdi said at the Teiba Press corp on Monday.

Sudan's unemployment rate fluctuated substantially in recent years, ending at 20.6% in 2016. According to World Data Atlas the unemployment rate dropped by 4.8% to 19.6% this year.

Source: World Data Atlas/Knoema

Though unemployment rates may vary owing to the difference in definitions given by the country or statistical services.

El Mahdi also reported that the productive labour force in Sudan, which falls within the age of 18-65 years, amounts to 21 million this year according to statistics from 2012 and projections of the years that followed. 

Medicine shortage

Meanwhile pharmacists and medicine traders warned of higher prices of medicines because of the rise of the US Dollar, which reached more than SDG21 this week. They expect a shortage in medicines as pharmaceutical companies stop importing them.

The country's plummeting US Dollar exchange rate, which witnessed an all-time high yesterday, was pushed by Washington's decision to delay its deadline for permanently lifting or continuing its economic sanctions against Sudan.

The Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Gen .Dr Mohamed El Rikabi, said that Khartoum has received a letter from the US Department of Treasury, stating that the financial transactions between Sudan and international banks have been fully resumed since Thursday.

El Rikabi described the letter as “significant breakthrough” in Sudan’s relations with the international financial sector and international financial institutions. Commenting on Washington's decision to delay the lifting of sanctions, he said that despite his dissatisfaction with the decision, Sudan has made significant gains in international financial transactions.

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