Gold Revenues Contributed towards Bridging Budget Deficit
Khartoum – The increase of gold production contributed towards redressing budget shortfall in the country, the Minister of Finance and National Economy has said.
Gold output shot up by 130% compared to last year and that has stabilized domestic production, Ali Mahmoud said.
Addressing yesterday the Council of States, the Minister revealed the policies needed to achieve goals of the programme including activating policies of self-sufficiency, boosting exports and key commodities.
Mahmoud stressed the need to cut government spending and to focus on key projects, attributing the current deterioration of economic situation to the lack of development of agricultural and industrial products during the period from 2000 to 2010.
The country is currently importing $120 million worth of oil products, he said, adding that if non-oil exports are increased that would contribute towards stability of the economy. He underlined the importance of increased production of wheat, sugar, edible oil and pharmaceutical drugs as the country lost 45% of revenues after secession.
The country’s economy has been stable over the past ten years leading to an increase in the average growth to 7.2% and foreign investments have also gone up reaching nearly $404.3 millions which in turn stabilized the exchange rate and increased per capita income, the Minister said, adding that social support to poor families has also been enhanced as 500,000 families are expected to benefit from the support.
Mahmoud said the strict policies pursued by the state minimized embezzlement of public money and the measures would continue until the phenomenon is stamped out.
The Council’s session, chaired by Hamid Adam Musa, endorsed the Minister’s statement which contained many recommendations including the need to cut government expenditure and to facilitate investment.
Meanwhile, First Vice President, Ali Osman Mohamed Taha, affirmed the importance of easing hard living conditions and completing development projects in west Darfur State.
At a meeting with Governor of West Darfur State, Hayder Galakoma, Taha pledged to expedite completion of key projects including Sabra airport.
The Governor, for his part, said the meeting with Taha discussed implementation of the Doha Document for Peace in Darfur in coordination with the Darfur Regional Authority. He said he briefed the First Vice President on preparations for the agricultural season and mobilization to support the army to repulse aggression.
The First Vice President was also briefed by Presidential Assistant Musa Mohamed Ahmed on efforts to achieve development in eastern Sudan.
The Presidential Assistant told reporters that he briefed Taha on the outcome of his visit to the eastern States and the progress of implementation of the Eastern Sudan Peace Agreement (ESPA).
By Hana Abdul Hai, 15/05/2012