General Information

Capital(s): Khartoum
Population: 40,187,486 (2007)
Area: 2,505,810 Km²
Currency: 1 Sudanese dinar = 10 Sudanese pounds; 1 Sudanese pound = 100 piastres
Time Zone: GMT+2h00
ISO Code: SD
Dialing Code: +249


Sudan, the largest country in Africa, is an independent republic which lies to the south of Egypt and forms part of the North East African Region. The capital city is Khartoum. Other major cities are Juba and Omdurman and Port Sudan.

The official language is Arabic but over 100 other languages are spoken. English is spoken in business and government circles. The local currency is the Sudanese dinar. (US$ / Sud D – current exchange rate).

The international time zone for Sudan is GMT +2 and the international dialling code is +249. The international airport at Khartoum is served by 16 airlines, most of them Middle Eastern. Sudan Airways operates both internationally and domestically. Sudan has extensive transport facilities that are, however, inadequate due to the size of the country. All visitors, except nationals of Egypt and Tanzania, require visas in order to visit Sudan.

The state of health, the current immunisation status, location and the local disease situation lead to the risk of contraction of hepatitis A, malaria (regional), schistosomiasis, tuberculosis, and typhoid fever in Sudan. A risk assessment is recommended. Vaccinations and insurance should be arranged prior to arrival in the country.


Sudan has endured a civil war for almost twenty years and although the negotiation process picked up in 2003 with the involvement of the Bush administration, there was still a continuation of skirmishes between the government and rebel forces. Despite this, the country has massive oil potential and a strong reform programme instituted by the government during the nineties contributed to economic growth.

Agriculture remains an important industry sector and means that a large proportion of economic success is dependent on favourable weather conditions. The most important agricultural exports are oil seeds, especially sesame cotton, and livestock. Other export commodities include gold, vegetable oil, crude vegetable materials, groundnuts, gum arabic and sugar.

Sudan also has oil and petroleum products as an export commodity. A significant number of oil reserves, as at January 2006, it was estimated that Sudan holds proven conventional reserves of 563 million barrels of oil. Oil exploration has been concentrated mostly on the central and south-central regions of the country because of civil war affecting the western, northwestern and southern regions of the country. It is believed that the Red Sea area in eastern Sudan, the Blue Nile Basin and the northwestern region of the country holds huge potential reserves.

There is a high level of poverty and inequality in income. The government’s ability to deliver social services is very poor mainly owing to the unrest in the country and the resulting deterioration of infrastructure.

In 2002 the country’s GDP was US$13.5 billion of which agriculture made up 39.2%, industry 18.3% and services 42,5%. In 2001 the country attracted US$ 574 million in foreign direct investment.

International Trade

The main export commodities in Sudan include animals, cotton, cut flowers, fish, arabic gum, olibanum, sesame and sugar. The main import commodities include automotive components, building materials, agricultural fertilisers food ingredients, medicines, various petroleum products and textiles and knitwear.

Foreign Exchange is administered by the Bank of Sudan, with the assistance of the authorised banks and specialised banks acting as exchange houses. All exporters and importers are required to register with the Ministry of Trade.

Import licences are not required, except for goods imported through bilateral and preferential trade arrangements.

As of 2005, Sudan’s major trading partners have been China, Saudi Arabia, Japan, Germany and the United Arab Emirates.

Memberships (20)

United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, Islamic Development Bank, International Finance Corporation, International Monetary Fund, African Union, The World Bank Group, United Nations, Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency, Arab League Documentation and Information Centre, Economic Commission for Africa

Exchanges (1)

Khartoum Stock Exchange

Facilities (22)

Abu Ghabra Field, Adar Field, Block 1 – Sudan, Block 2 – Sudan, Block 4 -Sudan, Block 5A – Sudan, Block 6 – Sudan, El Nar Field, El Obeid, El Toor, Hassai, Heglig Field, Ingessana Hills, Khartoum North, Port Sudan Refinery, Roseires, Sharaf Field, Suakin Field, Sudan Khartoum Refinery Co Ltd, Tabaldi Field

Travel Facilities

Accommodation (20): Hilton Port Sudan, Acropole Hotel, Ambassador Hotel, Araak Hotel, Danah Hotel, El-Sawahli, Friendship Palace Hotel, Grand Holiday Villa Khartoum, Grand Hotel, Green Village, Haramein Hotel, Hilton International Khartoum, Imperial Hotel Sudan, Khartoum Hilton, Le Meridien Khartoum
Attractions (34): Arkawit Wildlife Sanctuary, Ashana Game Reserve, Bandingilo National Park, Bengangai Game Reserve, Boma National Park, Chelkou Game Reserve, Confluence of Blue and White Niles, Coral Reef, Dinder National Park, El-Obeid Cathedral, Ethnographical Museaum, Fanyikango Game Reserve, Jebel Barkal, Jebel Marra, Juba Game Reserve
Restaurants (2): Little India, Meridien
Transport related (5): Dongola Airport, Juba Airport, Kassala Airport, Khartoum International Airport, Nyala Airport

Shaun Bakamoso

Greetings. I'm Shaun Bakamoso, and I'm thrilled to be your guide through the dynamic world of business news in South Africa here at With a passion for staying informed and a keen interest in the ever-evolving landscape of business, I've dedicated myself to providing you with timely, insightful, and comprehensive coverage of the latest developments impacting the South African economy. / Instagram