Economy - overview: Sudan has turned around a struggling economy with sound economic policies and infrastructure investments, but it still faces formidable economic problems. Starting in 1997 Sudan began implementing IMF macroeconomic reforms that have successfully stabilized inflation. In 1999 Sudan began exporting crude oil and in the last quarter of 1999 recorded its first trade surplus, along with monetary policy, has stabilized the exchange rate. Current oil production stands at 220,000 barrels per day, of which some 70% is exported and the rest refined mostly for domestic consumption. Increased oil production, revived light industry, and expanded export processing zones should maintain GDP growth at 5% in 2002. Agriculture production remains Sudan's most important sector, employing 80% of the work force and contributing 43% of GDP, but most farms remain rain-fed and susceptible to drought. Sudan is also constrained by its limited access to international credit; most of Sudan's $24.9 billion debt remains in arrears. The civil war, chronic instability, adverse weather, and weak world agricultural prices ensure that much of the population will remain at or below the poverty line for years.
Definition: This entry briefly describes the type of economy, including the degree of market orientation, the level of economic development, the most important natural resources, and the unique areas of specialization. It also characterizes major economic events and policy changes in the most recent 12 months and may include a statement about one or two key future macroeconomic trends.
Source: CIA World Factbook - Unless otherwise noted, information in this page is accurate as of April 17, 2002
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