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SSP hits record low against USD

By Nema Juma

The South Sudanese Pound has further weakened against the US dollar. In the black market, the South Sudanese Pound now trades at 360 SSP ($100 for 36,000 SSP) against a dollar while the official rate keeps fluctuating, the Central Bank declined to mention the official rate.

Economists have attributed the fall in value to the Coronavirus Pandemic, which has affected the foreign exchange and the fall in the global prices of crude oil which is the main source of foreign currency exchange.

Others have warned that the SSP might further weakened in the coming days.

The Managing Director of Ebony Center for Strategic Studies Dr. Lual Deng said the fall in value of the SSP was caused by the high demand of foreign currency during the pandemic.

 “This time the country can’t save the situation unless it gets new currency coming in through the budget support from the World Bank. The Ministry of Finance is already negotiating on that with the International Monitoring Fund (IMF) and World,” he said.

Another official from the Central Bank who preferred to remain anonymous also attributed it to the global fall in the oil prices.

“Basically our oil is sold in China and other countries but because of COVID-19 they are not buying the oil and the price in the international market has dropped down that means we are not getting enough foreign currency in the country, so this fluctuates into weakening the pounds,” the official told Juba Monitor through Phone interview.

“We are importing basic commodities like wheat flour, sorghum, fuel from the neighboring countries, and this also takes a lot of foreign currency, so all those factors are making the South Sudanese Pound to go down because we are not getting enough foreign currency in to our economy,” he added.

“If the price of the oil remains like that in the international market, we will not have enough of the pounds here.”

“We have to diversify the economy, we need to produce some of the foods locally here, and when we produce we will be selling them using our currency here and this will ease the pressure on the reserve that we have in the country.”

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