Home | News    Tuesday 4 December 2012

Sudanese government approves 2013 draft budget, says no lifting of fuel subsidies

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December 3, 2012 (KHARTOUM) – The Sudanese finance minister Ali Mahmood on Monday denied any intention to further cut fuel subsidies next year and ruled out the possibility of increasing wages despite intense pressure by the labor union.

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Sudan’s Finance and National Economy Minister Ali Mahmood Abdel-Rasool (AFP)

Following today’s cabinet meeting headed by president Omer Hassan al-Bashir that approved the 2013 draft budget, Mahmood asserted that the government cannot afford bumping wages while maintaining fuel subsidies.

"If we increased wages, this would require lifting subsidies on commodities and fuel," he told reporters.

Today’s meeting called for the establishment of a committee to study the issue of raising wages in general and the minimum wage in particular. The findings are to be presented before the end of 2013’s first quarter.

The minister said that the 2013 budget projects 25.2 billion Sudanese pounds (SDG) in revenues and 35.0 billion SDG in expenses leaving a deficit of 10 billion SDG ($1.5 billion) which equals 3.4% of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

He added that exports are expected to reach $4.5 billion in 2013 compared to $3.8 billion last year with imports at $7.2 billion bringing trade deficit to $2.7 billion.

The official complained that consumption of petroleum products has increased and said he expects fuel subsidies to reach $4.8 billion this year compared to $2.5 billion in 2011.

Overall the budget targets 3.4% economic growth, inflation rate of 20% compared to 45% in October, deficit at 3.4% of GDP, exchange rate flexibility while reducing imports and increasing exports.

Mahmood said that Sudan’s oil production will hit150,000 barrels per day (bpd) from 115,000 bringing $300 million in revenues.

Gold exports reached between 47 and 48 tonnes by November and were expected to rise above 50 tonnes annually, bringing in more than $2 billion a year, he added.

The budget however will not reflect last September’s oil deal with landlocked South Sudan by which Khartoum would receive a cut from every barrel of oil exported by Juba.

South Sudan was meant to resume oil production on Nov. 15 with the first exports to hit markets by January.

But recent hurdles that emerged as a result of Khartoum’s insistence that security arrangements are agreed on with Juba before oil can start flowing again.

Since the secession of the oil-rich south in July 2011, Sudan has suffered an economic shock causing a sharp drop in revenues and flow of hard currency coupled with deteriorating exchange rate and soaring inflation levels.

Oil now accounts for 3-5% of Sudan’s GDP, down from around 15% , while providing a much-reduced 20-25% of revenue, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said in a recent report.

This year Sudan adopted an austerity package partially lifting fuel and sugar subsidies as well as curtailing number of federal and state ministries to rein in spending. It also raised certain taxes and devalued the currency in a bid to bring parity with black market rate.

The IMF welcomed the austerity package but called on Khartoum to enhance tax policy and revenue administration "by reducing tax exemptions and improving tax compliance". It also urged the East African nation " to pursue the phasing-out of subsidies and develop a well targeted safety net system. It also recommends imposing a profit tax on gold producers as the sector develops".

The IMF said that Sudan’s GDP is projected to shrink by -11.1% this year and -0.6% in 2013.

(ST)

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  • 4 December 2012 08:56, by Northern Sudanese

    This is great news, other than oil everything else has went very well this year. Gold has become a success and food self sufficiency is growing as white nile sugar factory is opened ’’to reach full capacity in 2014’’ , Roseires dam completed to support agricultural projects in blue nile state. we have been told since early 2011 that next 3 years will be difficult, but we are on the right track

    repondre message

    • 4 December 2012 10:26, by Logic

      Bla bla bla... all this is meaningless as long as people are suffering due to government oppression. Our land will no longer be exploited by these narrow minded extremists.
      Your time is near.

      repondre message

      • 5 December 2012 00:16, by Northern Sudanese

        Logic
        government opression? dark monkey please, go fix your own trouble. we left you long time ago, we even currently feed you after re opening the border to give you sorghum. respect your masters

        repondre message

      • 5 December 2012 00:27, by Northern Sudanese

        Logic
        i know how jealous you are, because your dream turned into a nightmare.
        the worst health crisis in the world are in south sudan, most development projects on hold due to lack of money, unable to feed more than half your people, wages for soldiers and police not paid for over 5 months therefore they go drink and shoot people, south sudanese killing each others over cows and 98% budget fucked

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    • 5 December 2012 06:29, by Tutbol

      N Sudanese
      You have been vexing S Sudanese of their blackness & ugliness. Now tell us what is the make of your finance minister? He is even darker & uglier than some S Sudanese. N Sudanese, to be honest with you, you are a defeated man. Defeated people always resort to detractive tricks to lead people away from the real issues. No one in S Sudan, did ever claimed he/she is white or that S Sudan...

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      • 5 December 2012 06:40, by Tutbol

        ..doesn’t have its share of the hansomes & the uglies alike. What country doesn’t have its hansomes & its ugliests on earth? Grow up man or post your picture on this site so we know how whitish, redish, brownish or hansome you are, than everyone else. Otherwise, you are just a T/R/Ö/L/L man.

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  • 4 December 2012 08:59, by Northern Sudanese

    but NCP needs to focus more on agriculture like Gezera Scheme and provide mush needed technology for irrigation. gezera scheme when finished we don’t need to spend billions in importing food any longer and from the money we could support new projects to improve the economy. mining is also very vital specially in the red sea hills.

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  • 4 December 2012 09:11, by ForAll

    What about the basic human needs?

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    • 5 December 2012 00:23, by Northern Sudanese

      ForAll
      for basic human needs
      in a number of states, including khartoum they made hospitals for poor people for free, depending on each families income
      primary education is now free with free meals for public schools
      food self suffieciency through agicalture projects like gezira scheme
      and more, far better than south sudan so don’t worry, ST never mentions these things!

      repondre message

  • 4 December 2012 12:34, by Jalaby

    The most important and very exciting thing in this budget that it doesn’t include the south oil transition fees as revenue at all,it doesn’t count even $1.
    We’ll survive without south oil no doubt and will come out of this bottle neck safe but let us see how thieves will survive without oil,the sky even made it worse because floods washed away their crops!

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    • 4 December 2012 18:36, by Ruach

      Jallabi:You are crying now I see you!

      repondre message

      • 5 December 2012 00:18, by Northern Sudanese

        Ruach
        the one who’s crying is the one who’s economy is 98% fucked and couldn’t feed more than half his people. without oil your dead, and your crops are failed.
        now continue crying my friend, hopefully one day you get a full meal.

        repondre message

  • 4 December 2012 13:53, by ForAll

    "If we increased wages, this would require lifting subsidies on commodities and fuel," he told reporters.
    Are the majority of Sudanese community MEMBERS employed by GOS?

    repondre message

    • 5 December 2012 00:20, by Northern Sudanese

      ForAll
      there are public rules for wages + most sudanese work in the public sectors which are owned by the government.

      repondre message

    • 5 December 2012 01:58, by Observer

      ForAll,
      While we have a very bloated large public service in which you have to be ( or pretend to be) a NCP member, or have connections or receive patronage it isn’t true that most Sudanese work for the Government.
      N Sudanese will come on here ( and he is one of the employed elite public servants) and tell you that I am wrong etc.

      repondre message

  • 14 June 2013 12:13, by smithcurt

    As soon as I discovered this website I went on reddit to share some of the love with them.
    online nursing schools

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