Sudan Bank assigns $9,5 million to pharmaceutical industry
The Central Bank of Sudan will allocate 35 million United Arab Emirates Dirham ($9.5 million) to develop Sudan's pharmaceutical industry and address the chronic deficit in medicines.
Central Bank director Abdelrahman Hassan issued a press statement on Monday. He said that the allocation of the AED 35 million comes as part of a state policy and directives by the presidency, that called to develop national drug manufacturing to meet the needs of the Sudanese population.
An inter-ministerial meeting held on Sunday discussed the matter. Minister of Industry Mohamed Yusuf, Minister of State at the Ministry of Health Sumaya Akad, the Central Bank director, and the President of the Chamber of Pharmaceutical Industry, Ahmed Badawi, attended.
Hassan reiterated that the Central Bank continues to provide facilities from foreign banks to meet the needs of the national pharmaceutical industry and to provide direct resources to this sector.
Most of the medicines in Sudan are imported. As an economist explained in December, traders now freely import medicines with hard currency bought at the black market. Since the previous week, the black market rate of the Sudanese pound to the dollar (SDG12) is double the official rate.
The Central Bank is accused of failing to provide the necessary foreign exchange for drug importation. In December, a member of the Association of Private Pharmacies confirmed “a 70 percent increase” of some prices.
Dr. El Nasri Margus, the director of Sudan's pharmacy division, told Radio Dabanga in January that owners of medicine companies and pharmacies said that the recent medicine crisis has contributed to taking about five companies out of business and laying off more than 40 pharmacists. “They think that the prices of drugs will continue to rise, at the same time as the decline of the Sudanese pound against the U.S. Dollar.”
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