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Communist Party warns of food crisis in Sudan

July 16 - 2018 KHARTOUM / EL GEDAREF
Farmers in Sudan (alaraby.co.uk)
Farmers in Sudan (alaraby.co.uk)

The streets of Khartoum again show long lines of people waiting in front of petrol stations and bakeries to buy fuel or bread. Cooking gas has become extremely scarce again as well. According to Sudan’s Communist Party, the ongoing fuel crisis will definitely lead to a famine in the country.

Residents told Radio Dabanga from Khartoum that the capital's remote areas are lacking flour, prompting them search for bread in other districts.

An employee in Khartoum reported that the renewed fuel crisis is impeding public transport. “The bus stations are overcrowded in the mornings and afternoons, with people waiting to catch a bus,” he said. “Most of the city buses stopped working or else they are queuing in front of fuel stations waiting for their share.”

A listener in eastern Sudan’s El Gedaref also complained about a lack of bread and cooking gas. “We are again suffering from a flour crisis. For two weeks now it is very hard to find bread in the state,” he said. “The price of a cylinder of cooking gas jumped to SDG 350 ($ 12*) in the black market.”

Sudan suffered from a scarcity of fuel and cooking gas and flour crises for short periods of time only last year. In March 2018 however, the crises extended and became acute, as economists predicted in December.

In June, the crises seemed to subside, yet early this week several Sudanese reported about a lack of fuel and bread again.

Affected

Farmers in Sudan, especially in the eastern and central parts of the country, repeatedly warned for harvest failures because of the scarcity of diesel needed for irrigation pumps and agricultural machines.

“The sorghum harvest is fully paralysed because of the ongoing lack of diesel needed for our [harvesting] machines. The irrigation pumps are stalled for the same reason, which means that the cultivation of vegetables this year will almost certainly fail,” a farmer told this station in early May.

The UN FAO’s Global Information and Early Warning System on Food and Agriculture reported in its country brief on June 14 that shortages and high prices of both fuel and agricultural inputs may compromise Sudan’s 2018 cropping season.

Radio Dabanga reported yesterday that the continuing shortage of fuel and repeated power cuts have forced cement factories in Sudan’s River Nile state to reduce their production by more than half.

Famine’

The Communist Party of Sudan expects a famine as a result of the continuing fuel crisis.

In a press statement on Sunday, the party that the severe scarcity of fuel will definitely lead to an acute lack of food in the country. The fuel crisis is affecting all sectors in the country, and causing the prices of food and electricity to soar even more, the party said.

Various analysts, among them Hafiz Mohamed, have warned that the country will soon run out of many essential commodities.


* Based on the indicative US Dollar rate quoted by the Central Bank of Sudan

 


 


 


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