Inflation on decline, says Agak

Inflation on decline, says Agak
Minister of Finance and Planning, Agak Achuil Lual (photo credit: courtesy)

Financial reforms have drastically stabilised South Sudanese Pounds and slowed down inflation, the Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Agak Achuil Lual, has said.  

Agak argued that since the government embarked on the public financial management reform process for the implementation of chapter four of the agreement; resultant positive developments have been noticed in addressing inflation and the exchange rate.

Financial reform is a policy measure designed to free the financial systems and transform their structures with the goal of achieving a liberalised market-oriented system within an appropriate regulatory framework.

“As the government embarks on public financial management, the reforms have contributed significantly to harmonising the exchange rate, stabilising South Sudanese Pound and slowing down inflation, ” Minister Achuil.

He was speaking during the strategic prioritisation workshop for the elaboration of the United Nations sustainability development cooperation framework yesterday in Juba.

Agak said the government also embarked on a review of the National Development Strategy [NDS] with support from the United Nations.

He said the aim is to revise the NDS document that has been passed by the council of ministers and is waiting for approval by the Reconstituted Transitional National Legislative Assembly (R-TNLA).

He said the review process was inclusive because government institutions, civil society organisations and some key stakeholders have been consulted.

The finance minister said the government has formulated NDS as a tool to be implemented.

“The review process resulted in a revised priority for the government for the period 2021 to 2024.” This presents a great opportunity for the United Nations member countries as you develop the next cooperation framework, ” he said. 

Progress made

However, he stated that the economy was in a recovery mode in 2018 and 2019 and that it was expected to recover by 3.2 per cent from three years of declining growth.

Growth in the oil and mining sector was estimated to be 10.7%, while the services sector was estimated to be 0.4%, and agriculture was estimated to be 2.5%.

Last month, Agak promised to make possible reforms by starting from where his predecessor had stopped. He said reform does not belong to the International Monitory Fund or the World Bank but to the government.

He warned some government officials against submitting fake financial requests to the ministry.

He said that some government officials often go to the ministry of finance with fake papers to get money for their personal use.

He promised that the ministry would fight and work to make sure that the economy improved. He said there was a need to work as a team to improve the economy in order to stabilise the prices of commodities in the markets.