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Sudan incurring large losses due to the continued closure of ports, roads, and infrastructure in the east

In more than one month of blockage of Port Sudan due to protests by dissident groups, Sudan estimated so far losses of about US$ 83 million due to the paralysis of all import and export operations in the country.

Port Sudan is blocked since September 17 by protestors, who also erected barricades along the main roads connecting the Port to the rest of the country, including the Port Sudan-Khartoum highway and the railway line connecting Port Sudan to Khartoum. This has caused a shortage of basic commodities in the country, such as flour and fuel, obliging the country to look for alternative ports for channeling its imports and exports, such as Ein Sukhna and Alexandria in Egypt, Benghazi in Libya, and Massawa in Eritrea.

However, the longer distance of these ports has caused a sharp increase of transport costs and of prices of imported goods that are consumed in the country.

The Ministry of Trade is now looking at Ethiopia, South Sudan, and the Central African Republic as other potential routes for channeling the Sudanese external trade.

Port Sudan serves as a vital trading hub for Sudan's economy, handling about 90 percent of the country’s foreign trade. In June 2021 the Sudanese government contracted a Dutch consulting firm, HPC Hamburg Port Consulting, to assist the country in reducing vessel waiting time and increasing equipment availability at the South Port Container Terminal (SPCT), in an attempt to improve efficiency of port operations. In 2018, the Philippines-based port operator International Container Terminal Services (ICTSI) was awarded a 20-year concession to operate the terminal, but the agreement was canceled due to some protests by port workers.






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