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Sudan Economy


Despite being the 17th-fastest-growing economy in the world with new economic policies and infrastructure investments, Sudan still faces formidable economic problems, as it must rise from a very low level of per capita output. Since 1997, Sudan has been implementing the macroeconomic reforms recommended by the International Monetary Fund.

In 1999, Sudan began exporting crude oil and in the last quarter of 1999, recorded its first trade surplus. Increased oil production production revived light industry, and expanded export processing zones helped sustain gross domestic product (GDP) growth at 6.1% in 2003. These gains, along with improvements to monetary policy, have stabilised the exchange rate. China is Sudan's largest economic partner, with a 40% share in their oil, and also sells Sudan small arms.

Oil is Sudan's main export, and the production is increasing dramatically. With rising oil revenues the Sudanese economy is booming, with a growth rate of about 9% in 2007. Other rich mineral resources available in Sudan are natural gas, gold, silver, chromite, asbestos, manganese, gypsum, mica, zinc, iron, lead, uranium, copper, kaolin, cobalt, granite, nickel, tin and aluminium.

Agriculture production remains Sudan's most-important sector, employing 80% of the workforce and contributing 39% of GDP, but most farms remain rain-fed and susceptible to drought. Instability, adverse weather and weak world-agricultural prices ensures that much of the population will remain at or below the poverty line for years.

The Merowe Dam, also known as Merowe Multi-Purpose Hydro Project or Hamdab Dam, is a large construction project in Northern Sudan, about 350 km (220 mi) north of the capital, Khartoum. It is situated on the River Nile, close to the Fourth Cataract where the river divides into multiple smaller branches with large islands in between. Merowe is a city about 40 km (25 mi) downstream from the dam's construction site. The main purpose of the dam will be the generation of electricity. Its dimensions make it the largest contemporary hydro-power project in Africa. The dam was inaugurated on 3 March 2009, supplying more than 90% of the population with electricity.

Despite the US sanctions, the Sudanese economy is one of the fastest-growing in the world according to an October 2006 report by The New York Times.


Economy - overview :
Since 1997, Sudan has been working with the IMF to implement macroeconomic reforms including a managed float of the exchange rate and a large reserve of foreign exchange. A new currency, the Sudanese Pound, was introduced in January 2007 at an initial exchange rate of $1 equals 2 Sudanese Pounds. Sudan began exporting crude oil in the last quarter of 1999 and the economy boomed on the back of increases in oil production, high oil prices, and significant inflows of foreign direct investment until the second half of 2008. The Darfur conflict, the aftermath of two decades of civil war in the south, the lack of basic infrastructure in large areas, and a reliance by much of the population on subsistence agriculture ensure much of the population will remain at or below the poverty line for years to come despite rapid rises in average per capita income. Sudan's real GDP expanded by 5.2% during 2010, an improvement over 2009's 4.2% growth but significantly below the more that 10% per year growth experienced prior to the global financial crisis in 2006 and 2007. While the oil sector continues to drive growth, services and utilities play an increasingly important role in the economy with agriculture production remaining important as it employs 80% of the work force and contributes a third of GDP. In the lead up to the referendum on southern secession, which took place in January 2011, Sudan saw its currency depreciate considerably on the black market with the Central Bank's official rate also losing value as the Sudanese people started to hoard foreign currency. The Central Bank of Sudan intervened heavily in the currency market to defend the value of the pound and the Sudanese government introduced a number of measures to restrain excess local demand for hard currency, but uncertainty about the secession has meant that foreign exchange remains in heavy demand.

GDP (purchasing power parity) :
$98.79 billion (2010 est.)

GDP (official exchange rate) :
$65.93 billion (2010 est.)

GDP - real growth rate :
5.2% (2010 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP) :
$2,200 (2010 est.)

GDP - composition by sector :
agriculture: 32.1%
industry: 29%
services: 38.9% (2010 est.)

Labour force :
11.92 million (2007 est.)

Labour force - by occupation :
agriculture: 80%
industry: 7%
services: 13% (1998 est.)

Unemployment rate :
18.7% (2002 est.)

Population below poverty line :
40% (2004 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share :
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%

Investment (gross fixed) :
20.2% of GDP (2010 est.)

Budget :
revenues: $11.06 billion
expenditures: $13.15 billion (2010 est.)

Public debt :
94.2% of GDP (2010 est.)

Inflation rate (consumer prices) :
11.8% (2010 est.)

Stock of narrow money :
$7.713 billion (31 December 2010 est)

Stock of broad money :
$13.5 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Stock of domestic credit :
$10.15 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares :

Agriculture - products :
cotton, peanuts, sorghum, millet, wheat, gum arabic, sugar cane, cassava (tapioca), mangos, papaya, bananas, sweet potatoes, sesame; sheep, livestock

Industries :
oil, cotton ginning, textiles, cement, edible oils, sugar, soap distilling, shoes, petroleum refining, pharmaceuticals, armaments, automobile/light truck assembly

Industrial production growth rate :
3.5% (2010 est.)

Electricity - production :
4.341 billion kWh (2007 est.)

Electricity - consumption :
3.438 billion kWh (2007 est.)

Electricity - exports :
0 kWh (2008 est.)

Electricity - imports :
0 kWh (2008 est.)

Oil - production :
486,700 bbl/day (2009 est.)

Oil - consumption :
84,000 bbl/day (2009 est.)

Oil - exports :
303,800 bbl/day (2007 est.)

Oil - imports :
11,400 bbl/day (2007 est.)

Oil - proved reserves :
6.8 billion bbl (1 January 2010 est.)

Natural gas - production :
0 cu m (2008 est.)

Natural gas - exports :
0 cu m (2008 est.)

Natural gas - imports :
0 cu m (2008 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves :
84.95 billion cu m (1 January 2010 est.)

Current account balance :
-$2.595 billion (2010 est.)

Exports :
$9.777 billion (2010 est.)

Exports - commodities :
oil and petroleum products; cotton, sesame, livestock, groundnuts, gum arabic, sugar

Exports - partners :
China 58.29%, Japan 14.7%, Indonesia 8.83%, India 4.86% (2009)

Imports :
$8.483 billion (2010 est.)

Imports - commodities :
foodstuffs, manufactured goods, refinery and transport equipment, medicines and chemicals, textiles, wheat

Imports - partners :
China 21.87%, Saudi Arabia 7.22%, Egypt 6.1%, India 5.53%, UAE 5.3% (2009)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold :
$2.063 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Debt - external :
$37.98 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Exchange rates :
Sudanese pounds (SDG) per US dollar - 2.36 (2010), 2.32 (2009), 2.1 (2008), 2.06 (2007), 2.172 (2006)





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