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Report: ‘Sudanese Pound decreased 20 times in five years’

May 4 - 2022 KHARTOUM
Sudanese Pounds (File photo)
Sudanese Pounds (File photo)

The economic situation has continued to deteriorate in Sudan during 2022. The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in Sudan revealed the continued deterioration of the economic situation. Reports indicate that the value of the local currency has decreased 20 times (2,000 per cent) during the past five years.

In its latest report, OCHA states that the suspension of economic support provided by the international community (following the October 25 military coup in 2021) led to the suspension of more than $7.2 billion, and indicated that the decline in foreign exchange reserves, limited economic activity, and continued political instability led to the depreciation of the Sudanese Pound (SDG).

The exchange rate for the US dollar rose in commercial banks from about SDG442 at the beginning of 2022 to more than SDG565 by 31 March 2022 according to the Central Bank of Sudan.

On March 7, the Central Bank of Sudan announced the unification of the Sudanese Pound exchange rate to allow for the determination of currency exchange rates without interference from the Central Bank. Foreign exchange dealers on the parallel market reported that the Dollar exchange rate recorded SDG560 the previous day.

In February 2018, the official exchange rate set by the CBoS was 1USD for SDG18 whereas the parallel market rate was roughly SDG40. These numbers are indicative of the severe inflation Sudan has witnessed in recent years.

The government also unified the Sudanese Pound exchange rate in 2020 in an attempt to halt the ongoing inflation in Sudan. At that time, the official exchange rate for 1USD was adjusted from SDG55 to the parallel market rate of SDG375.

At that time, economics Professor Hasan Bashir and Professor Esam El Zein told Radio Dabanga that the currency adjustment would stabilise the exchange rate and encourage grants, loans, and emergency subsidies but also warned about increased poverty and inflation.

Since the October 25 military coup, the parallel market has started to become more powerful again and divert from the official exchange rate.

Economic conditions in Sudan have been harsh and many basic daily needs have become unaffordable for people as the Sudanese Pound plunges further and further.

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