In a new attempt to calm protests which have rocked Sudan, President Omar Hassan Al-Bashir yesterday announced a package of measures including the abolition of taxes and introducing investment and lending facilitations to encourage rural development.
Speaking to crowds in the northern city of Al-Abyad, Al-Bashir announced the abolition of the value-added tax on the microfinance sector.
He said the Sudanese government would reclaim land allocated to major investors and distribute them to small, medium and micro enterprises.
The announced measures is al- Bashir’s newest attempt to face down weeks of anti- government protests which called on him to step down.
Sudan has been witnessed popular protests since mid-December, with demonstrators decrying Al-Bashir’s seeming failure to remedy the country’s chronic economic woes.
Sudanese authorities say that around 31 people were killed since the protests began, while the opposition puts the death toll at around 50.
Last month, l-Bashir – in power since 1989 – pledged to carry out urgent economic reforms amid continued calls by the opposition to protest.
A nation of 40 million, Sudan has struggled to recover from the loss of three quarters of its oil output — its main source of foreign currency — since the secession of South Sudan in 2011.