World Economy

Sudanese Hit by Bread Shortages

Sudanese Hit by Bread ShortagesSudanese Hit by Bread Shortages

Bread shortages have hit Sudan, with wheat traders blaming a foreign currency crisis for shortages of the staple that have left people queuing for hours outside bakeries, Reuters reported. Sudan’s economy has been struggling since the south seceded in 2011, taking with it three-quarters of its oil output and depriving it of a crucial source of foreign currency. The crisis has deepened over the past year as a black market for US dollars has effectively replaced the formal banking system after the Sudanese pound was devalued, making it more difficult to import essential supplies such as wheat. A doubling of the price of bread in January triggered demonstrations after the government eliminated subsidies, although so far there was no sign of protests this time. Fatima Yassin, 36, in a queue for women, said: “Everything is expensive and bread is not available. We have a difficult life and the government doesn’t care about us.” Sudan imported two million tons of wheat in 2017, the government said in December, compared with 445,000 tons produced locally.

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