Sudan amends 2020 budget as Covid-19 hits revenues
Sudan’s Ministry of Finance has confirmed that public revenues have dropped by 40 per cent in the immediate wake of the Coronavirus (Covid-10) pandemic. The 2020 National Budget has been amended “to mitigate the negative impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the economic situation”.
Addressing a cabinet meeting on Monday, acting Finance Minister Hiba Mohamed Ali, said that the large deficit has necessitated reviewing the budget and taking emergency measures, including “a gradual adjustment of foreign exchange rates over a period of two years to reach the real price”.
Within the framework of the portfolio established by the High Committee for Economic Emergency, the price of fuel will be rationalised by allowing the private sector to import unlimited quantities of petrol and diesel to control scarcity.
The minister indicated that, despite the difficulty of these measures, it is expected that they will help to achieve gradual economic growth within three years, with eight points coming out of the current negative growth index and helping in the medium and long term to control inflation, which would reach high figures starting from the fiscal year 2021.
On Monday, Sudan’s Anti-Smuggling Committee announced that it has dismantled several networks illegally dealing in foreign currency, one of which is made up of 11 people.
The Committee estimated the seized currencies at $59,610 , in addition to 10,950 Emirati Dirham (10) thousand and 4,477 Saudi Riyals.
The committee also seized 11,150 Euros, 1,880 Pounds Sterling in addition to six billion Sudanese Pounds*.
Yesterday, Brigadier Jamal Juma, the spokesman for the Rapid Support Forces, said at a press conference in the Friendship Hall in Khartoum that the networks have other commercial activities at the Libya Market in Omdurman and the El Soug El Arabi in Khartoum. Some ATMs deal with them illegally.
He also revealed a number of seizures of smuggled strategic goods including flour, local wheat, petrol, and gas, as well as seizures of smuggled vehicles.
Brig. Gen. Sheikh El Haj, Director of the Anti-Smuggling Department at Customs, asserted that more dangerous than smuggling of commodities is the smuggling of documents through granting exemptions and concessions to companies who transfer goods to the parallel market. Gen El Haj , said that for example, his administration seized six Antonov aircraft engines and other spare parts that were found on a farm, through the smuggling of documents.
* USD 1 = SDG 55.1375 at the time of posting. As effective foreign exchange rates can vary in Sudan, Radio Dabanga bases all SDG currency conversions on the daily middle US Dollar rate quoted by the Central Bank of Sudan (CBoS).
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