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Oil revenue in Sudan slashed by 60% in 2009: GoSS

March 1, 2010 (KHARTOUM) – The proceeds from oil exports in Sudan has declined by a staggering 60% in 2009 with revenues measuring approximately $2.5 billion compared to $ 6.5 billion a year ago, according to a report compiled by the Government of South Sudan (GoSS).

The report said that oil prices reached an all time high of $132 in mid-2008 before dropping to $35 in the first quarter of 2009.

The global financial crisis that started in late 2008 has hit hard the economic activity throughout the world reducing demand for oil.

Last year, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said that Sudan’s foreign exchange reserves were sunk across the years from $2 billion in mid-2008 to $300 million in March 2009, which covers only 2 weeks of imports.

The IMF said this was caused by the fall in oil prices, which is Sudan’s main export, among other things.

The world financial body criticized Sudan’s 2009 budget saying that its underlying assumptions proved wrong with forecasted oil price of $65 per barrel compared to updated projected figures of $36.8 for 2009 and $44.7 in 2010.

GoSS said that the federal government’s share of oil production in 2009 was 83.7 million barrels, while the share of partners was around 77.1 million barrels. Total revenue from oil of amounted about $ 1.5 billion while oil used in domestic refineries totaled $ 1.06.

The share of the federal government was approximately $ 1.4 billion while GoSS share was $ 1.06 billion.

In Abyei, the report said that oil revenues there reached about $215.3 million with $64.6 million going to the Federal Government, $67.2 million to GoSS, $4.1 million each to the states of South Kordofan, Warrap, tribes of Dinka Ngok and Misseriya and $66.8 million to Abyei fund.

Some 98 per cent of south Sudan’s non-aid income comes from oil, while the corresponding figure for the north is 60-70 per cent

About 75 per cent of Sudan’s proven reserves of 6.3bn barrels are in the south but the pipeline that carries the oil to export terminals and refineries runs through the north. The south needs Khartoum’s co-operation to sell its oil; the north needs revenues from its neighbor’s resources.

Last month a senior GoSS official said that the South may continue to share oil proceeds with the North for a limited time following secession to prevent an economic collapse there.

The separation of Sudan into a two states will deny the North billions of dollars in revenue generating from vast oilfields in the south of the country. Currently the North and the South are splitting the proceeds of crude in accordance with the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) signed in 2005.

(ST)