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Sudan hikes flour subsidies by 40 percent to lower bread prices

November 4, 2018 at 12:08 pm

Women carry flour sacks during a food distribution by the Catholic Church to refugees and displaced people in Juba, Sudan on August 30, 2014 [SAMIR BOL/AFP/Getty Images]

Sudan increased flour subsidies by 40 percent, the Finance Ministry said on Saturday, after the reduction of subsidies this year sent bread prices higher and triggered protests.

The government would spend 35 million Sudanese pounds ($737,000) daily instead of 25 million, the statement added.

A decision to reduce bread subsidies this year sparked rare nationwide protests after bread prices doubled. Inflation climbed to a record 66 percent in August, one of the highest rates globally.

Sudan’s economy has been struggling since the south seceded in 2011, taking with it three quarters of oil output and depriving Khartoum of a crucial source of foreign currency.

Sudan sharply devalued its currency in October after a group of banks and money changers was tasked with setting the country’s exchange rate under a new system established by the government to tackle an acute shortage of foreign exchange.