April 30, 2014 (KHARTOUM) – The World Bank’s (WB) country director for Somalia, Sudan and South Sudan, Bella Bird, said that half of Sudan’s population is living below the poverty line and noted that the percentage of poor people in the capital Khartoum has increased by at least 25%.
- The World Bank’s country director for Somalia, Sudan and South Sudan, Bella Bird (Ashorooq TV)
The WB agreed on 10 April to establish a $100 million extraordinary fund for donors in order to finance development projects in Sudan until December 2019, while the Sudanese government this year committed $5 million to the fund to help finance development projects.
At a press conference in Khartoum on Wednesday, Bird underscored the need for Khartoum to meet the economic challenges and contribute to poverty reduction, pointing out that $10 million have been allocated for education and natural resources.
Sudan is required to draft and implement a poverty reduction strategy in order to secure debt relief from creditors.
In a related issue, Sudan’s state minister at the ministry of finance, Magdi Hassan Yassin, predicted that Sudan’s economy would grow by 0.2% during the year.
He further underscored the government’s ability to overcome current economic difficulties.
Sudan’s economy was hit hard after the South declared independence in July 2011, taking with it about 75% of the country’s oil output.
The Sudanese pound has lost 100% of its value since South Sudan’s secession, pushing inflation rates to record levels given that the East African nation imports most of its food.