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Gedaref farmers struck by shortage of fuel

July 20 - 2018 EL GEDAREF / KADUGLI
Farmers in Kassala (Mohamed Alfatih Hassan Osman/World Bank)
Farmers in Kassala (Mohamed Alfatih Hassan Osman/World Bank)

El Gedaref farmers repeated their warnings for the failure of the seasonal cultivation. Kadugli has witnessed a complete lack of electricity in the past days that coincides with the water, bread and fuel shortages.

Small farmers in El Gedaref state have warned of a failure of the cultivation of sesame and millet in the current season, pointing to a lack of diesel and high production costs. There are reports of the security service targeting small farmers by confiscating their quantities of fuel.

Several farmers from various localities in the eastern Sudanese state told this station that the cost of plowing five feddans has risen during one week from SDG600 to SDG800 ($28.40*). One feddan is equivalent to 1.038 acres or 0.42 hectares.

‘Ethiopian farm workers won’t work here because of the low value of our Pound.’ – Farmer

Farmers reported there is a lack of fuel which has caused the price of a barrel of diesel in the black market to rise to SDG8,000 ($284.20), while the price of a liter of pesticide has risen to SDG350 ($12.43).

In addition, farmers reported a rise in labor prices. A farmer explained that Ethiopian workers have been reluctant to work on their farms this season because of the deterioration of the Sudanese Pound and the general price hikes in Sudan.

Kadugli

The shortages in basic consumer goods have forced people in the South Kordofan capital to queue in long lines in front of pumps and bakeries. Meanwhile the authorities have stopped supplying fuel, except for farmers in Kadugli.

A flour shortage also keeps El Fula in West Kordofan in its grip. A bakery owner told Radio Dabanga that the crisis has led to a reduction in the number of breads, which he has to sell at a price of SDG10 ($0.35).

“The price of a sack of flour has risen from SDG850 ($30.20) to SDG950 ($34) on the black market.”

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

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


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