JUBA – South Sudan’s local currency is expected to gain strength against the United States dollar after the country’s Central Bank announced that it will inject more dollars into the troubled market saying the action will prevent further depreciation of the local currency.
Central Bank Governor Dier Tong told the media that they started auctioning hard currency to forex bureaus in December 2020 to prevent the market from skyrocketing during the festive season.
“Every week, we are auctioning $2 million. Those who will win it, will have the cash. They are supposed to go and sale it,” he said at the weekend.
Currently, 1 dollar sells at about 600 in the parallel or black market while the official rate is 1 dollar to roughly 180 SSP.
South Sudan, an oil-dependent country is already facing its worst economic conditions because it gets much of its hard currency from oil sales.
The current production levels of crude oil have dropped from 250,000 barrels per day to around 175,000 barrels per day.
According to economists, this has reduced the government’s revenue, dwindling the economy.
In September 2020, the second deputy governor of the Bank of South Sudan, Daniel Kech Pouch told reporters that the bank had run out of foreign reserves, bringing the economy to its knees.
This compelled President Salva Kiir to form an economic crisis management committee to devise ways of revitalizing the economy.
One of the remedies was for the Central Bank to inject hard currency into the market.
“The dollar will come down and if the dollar comes down – because we are an import country we import most of the things from outside – it will have an impact on prices that will help the public,” Tong added.
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