17 December 2018

Sudan: Wages to Rise As Fuel and Bread Prices Climb

Photo: Fred Noy/UN Photo
A local farmer harvests sorghum produced from seeds donated by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) through the

Khartoum — Authority figures are calling on Sudanese Prime Minister to find solutions to fuel and bread shortages, as requests for a national wage increase is granted and the US Dollar continues to rise against the Sudanese Pound.

The head of the Sudanese Workers Trade Unions Federation announced after a meeting with the Prime Minister, Motaz Mousa, that wages will rise by SDG 500 (10.52*)for those in the lowest income group, and SDG 2,500 (52.63) for higher earners. Pensioners will also receive an increase of SDG 500.

He explained that they also discussed the entitlements and rights of workers who have lost their jobs at companies such as Sudan Airlines. Allegedly, the Prime Minister directed to pay them compensation immediately.

A study conducted by the Sudanese Professionals' Association showed that all employees in the North Darfur state are living below the poverty line. The study stressed that the minimum wage should be SDG 8,664 ($47.50*) to meet the requirements of living.

Further requests

The chairman of the Industry and Trade Committee of the Parliament, Abdallah Masir, requested Ibrahim Omar, Speaker of the National Assembly, to summon the Prime Minister to the parliament for a hearing on ongoing crises in the country.

Masir cited fuel and flour shortages, along with a lack of liquidity that resulted in the citizens not getting their bank balances, the rise in the Dollar against the Sudanese Pound, the surge of prices on consumer goods, the public transport crisis, and hindrances to transport of goods.

He requested that the Prime Minister find solutions and inform people on how to avoid recurrence of these issues.

South Kordofan

An official in Kadugli has described the economic and living conditions in South Kordofan as "very difficult". He confirmed to Radio Dabanga that there is a bread and fuel crisis in Kadugli and other major towns in the state. According to the official, in El Fasher the price of a kilogram of meat has risen to SDG 230. A bag of noodles is SDG 35.

Speaking to Radio Dabanga about the bread and fuel crises in July this year, former banker and economic analyst Hafiz Ismail described the situation as very serious. He stressed that if Sudan could not stop deterioration in the currency and the rise of prices of commodities by the end of this year, the dropped value of the Sudanese currency would prompt people to search for other means of trade exchange.

* All SDG currency conversions are approximate based on the daily US Dollar rate quoted by the Central Bank of Sudan (CBoS)

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