Sudan’s new leader wants foreign help to sure up finances

Abdallah Hamdok says $10bn in direct aid and foreign currency reserves are needed to help the economy recover after recent political instability.

Sudan’s new Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok has said his country needs at least $10bn in aid to restructure the country’s economy after months of political turmoil.

Hamdok, who is the country’s first civilian prime minister in 30 years will lead the country through its transitory period.

His appointment came after the Transitional Military Council, which deposed long-time leader Omar al-Bashir, reached a power-sharing agreement with civil society groups on August 17.

The new leader said he would approach the World Bank and IMF, as well as ‘friendly’ states in the coming weeks in order to secure the cash.

“We want to take the Sudanese economy from an economy based on consumption and imports to a productive economy, and stop exporting products such as livestock and agriculture as raw materials,” Hamdok said

An immediate priority will be to sure up the country’s foreign currency reserves. “We are in communication to achieve this,” he added.

While the leader has insisted such funds will come without strings attached, the IMF usually attaches conditions such as fiscal conservatism to its loans.

Kaan Devecioglu of the Association of Researchers on Africa (AFAM) organisation said Sudan risked entering into a debt spiral if it overburdened itself with loans.

“The transfer of resources, which beings in the form of aid, turns into a debt spiral for developing countries,” he said.

Even before the unrest that brought down Bashir, Sudan’s recent history has been replete with wars and political instability, that have seriously impacted its economy.

Muhammed Tandogan vice-President of AFAM told TRT World that Sudan needed to use its resources more efficiently to steady its finances.

“Sudan needs to actively use other resources, for example, it has the capacity to meet 90 percent of its own electricity needs with wind energy,” he said.

“The Sudanese government needs to meet with employers, public, universities and civil society representatives to run the process in line with the economy’s immediate action, medium-term and long-term development programs,” he added.

“In order to ensure equality of opportunity in the market, action plans should be developed to ensure fair sharing of resources to the public.”

Source: TRT World. Link to web article.

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