Sudan's Finance Minister Ali Mahmoud speaks during a news conference in Khartoum December 1, 2011. Sudan has received a loan from the People's Republic of China., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
THURSDAY 28 NOVEMBER 2013
Sudan says foreign investment levels are in decline
November 27, 2013 (KHARTOUM) - The Sudanese Investment minister Mustafa Osman Ismail acknowledged that inflows of Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) in the country have declined since the secession of the oil-rich south in mid-2011 compared to the prior decade.
Speaking at a news conference on Wednesday, Ismail said that in the period of 2000-2010, Sudan saw FDI totaling $29 billion and covering 230 projects of which 74% of them were in the oil sector. The rest were in service, industrial and agricultural sectors.
He said that this period was characterized by peace and stability after which Sudan’s ranking of FDI recipients in the Arab word dropped to fifth place from second.
The minister said that the biggest problem facing investment currently in the country is the land market and the exchange rate.
He stressed that creating an attractive investment environment needs is not about crafting new laws but applying them.
He pledged that 2014 will be a year that would see a surge in attracting investments.
Foreign companies operating in Sudan are suffering from the shortage in hard currency and continue to complain about losing millions of dollars when buying it from the black market.
Telecommunication companies continue to report losing money due to unfavorable exchange rate of the Sudanese pound relative to other major currencies.
Sudan’s economy was hit hard since the southern part of the country declared independence in July 2011, taking with it about 75% of the country’s oil output. As a result Sudan had been unable to come up with hard currency needed by individuals or businesses who want to import or send profits overseas.
Other investors complain of unfavorable investment laws and bureaucratic hurdles they face when they come to Sudan.