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Sudan’s central bank contradicts IMF figures on Forex reserves

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October 1, 2012 (KHARTOUM) – The governor of Sudan’s central bank Mohamed Kheir Al-Zubeir said on Monday that his country has enough foreign exchange reserves to cover around five months of imports contrary to figures released last week by the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

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Mohamed Khair Al-Zubair Ahmed, governor of Sudan’s central bank (Reuters)

"It’s very difficult now, it is around four to five months of imports," Al-Zubeir told Reuters when asked about foreign currency reserves.

"Four months is low but we hope that after this agreement (with South Sudan), the reserves will increase drastically," he said on the sidelines of a conference in Kuwait.

The IMF reported in its annual review of the Sudanese economy that Khartoum’s Forex reserves will drop from $1.3 billion in 2011 to $1.1 billion in 2012 before rising slightly to $1.2 billion in 2013.

These levels are enough to cover a little under two months of imports according to IMF calculations.

The governor - in line with a long standing policy - declined to say what Sudan’s Forex reserves are but revealed that their goal is to make them sufficient to fund imports for six to seven months.

A year ago, Al-Zubeir called on Arab states to provide up to $4 billion in deposits to shore up the country’s foreign exchange reserves.

He forecasted the Sudanese pound to appreciate against the dollar following an oil deal signed with South Sudan last month.

"Definitely the Sudanese pound exchange rate is going to stabilize," Al-Zubeir said. "We are taking of course measures to stabilize [the pound]," he said, without elaborating.

Sudanese authorities have failed in their persistent efforts to protect the value of the pound against foreign currencies particularly since the oil-rich south became an independent state in July 2011.

Landlocked South Sudan shut down its oil earlier this year denying Khartoum billions of dollars in transit fees. The recent agreement will provide for resumption of oil exports by Juba in the coming months.

In a related issue, Sudan’s ruling National Congress Party (NCP) expressed confidence today that the country’s external debt would be cancelled following last month’s deal between Khartoum and Juba.

The NCP’s spokesperson Badr Al-Deen Ibrahim said in press statements that "new dynamics" will compel creditors to proceed with debt relief adding that donors’ position in the south was due to their bias in favor of South Sudan.

The IMF estimated that Sudan’s external have grown by 27% since 2008 from $32.6 billion to $41.4 billion in 2011. The IMF projected debt levels to reach $43.7 billion in 2012 and $45.6 billion in 2013. The latter represents 83% of Sudan’s 2011 GDP number of $55.1 billion.

Sudan’s foreign minister Ali Karti in his speech before the UN General Assembly accused the international community of reneging on pledges of cancelling debt made following the signing of the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) between north and south Sudan.

North and South Sudan agreed last month to work jointly on seeking debt relief from international creditors. If these efforts are unsuccessful the ex-foes will sit down again to decide on how to split the debt.

(ST)

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  • 2 October 2012 10:52, by forza

    mr Mohamed Kheir,no problem currently sudan and s.sudan have to work together for debt relief and if they don’t succeed then they have to sit together and agree how to split them. economic diffidently will improve when oil production resumes and brings foreign currency.

    repondre message

    • 2 October 2012 15:42, by Logic

      Forza
      Since you’re happy with the deal and optimistic, why don’t you also organize a campaign of support for the civilians of BN, SK & Darfur, so that they too can enjoy your optimistic outlook of the Sudanese future. But you probably won’t because you know why...

      repondre message

      • 2 October 2012 21:56, by forza

        logic, ppl in BN/SK/DARFOUR are not waiting for me to organize a campaign for them.even netwrok coverage have reached them recently so they can upload their own campaign and publish to the entire world easily, unfortunately majority of ppl have have been used by as human shields for rebels groups that hired to play proxy war.they don’t represent people in these regions but they terrorize their lif

        repondre message

    • 2 October 2012 16:01, by Rommel

      Forza:
      The mis-leaders of South Sudan -our pseudo "Government- have wholly redefined the scourge that is corruption, the vice that is willful incompetence — and have displayed and demonstrated a whole new level of avarice, indifference, contempt and absolute disregard for the interests of their own citizens...

      repondre message

      • 2 October 2012 16:21, by Rommel

        .. but for all their obvious unsuitability for Government, their intellectual and moral vacuities, their palpable and glaring incompetence and neon bright corruption... I don’t think that they are at all sincere in their avowals that they will actually consider accepting and assuming the responsibility of any part of your obscenely large, god-awful debt should all other efforts fail.

        repondre message

        • 2 October 2012 21:38, by forza

          rommel, first i want to thank you about the rich language you offered,you said what needs to be said about s.sudan government but with all these defects we didn’t lose hope that s.sudan will act responsibly someday.maybe we will get to deal with good politicians like you in near future.currently s.sudan govt is not in a position act greedy or avarice as it’s not having the higher hand hand here.

          repondre message

      • 2 October 2012 16:36, by Logic

        Brother Rommel
        Please tone down your intellectual English as much of your valid points will be overlooked by many based on the calibre of commentators on this site. Simplify your language to have maximum affect on the reader. Much of what you write is very important but more importantly it needs to be comprehended by the masses. I hope you understand me.

        repondre message

        • 2 October 2012 17:13, by Rommel

          I want to start by thanking you for calling me your brother. I now feel the need to call you *brother* in kind - but it will make it seem as though we’re members of some secret society - lol. How are you, brother Logic? I hope you’re doing well. I get what you’re saying; I am ashamed to say that this is the second time that I’ve been told this. I’ll STOP now, I promise.

          repondre message

          • 2 October 2012 17:26, by Rommel

            I scrolled up and looked at my posts again -and yeah- I could have easily replaced "avarice" with greed, and could have made other changes to the text. This is actually how I talk with my friends all the time, but I now feel like a git. I speak English far better than I do Dinka. I am ashamed of the fact that I can’t even read or write in Dinka.

            repondre message

    • 2 October 2012 17:50, by Hardball

      Forza, the notion that somehow the debt that you accumulate building your military and your country is somehow others responsibility as well is beyond ludicrous. You have to prove beyond reasonable doubt that South-Sudan is responsible for part of $ 46 billion debt you owed China and other countries. How much is South-Sudan share out of $ 46 billion and what did South-Sudan build with it!

      repondre message

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