US Treasury’s Mnuchin to talk economy, Israel during Sudan visit
(KHARTOUM) – The US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin is expected to arrive in the Sudanese capital of Khartoum on Wednesday to discuss a number of topics related to economic aid and normalization with Israel, sources told Sudan Tribune.
Mnuchin’s visit is the first by a senior US official after Sudan was removed from the list of states that sponsor terrorism.
Maha Ayoub, the director of American Affairs in Sudan’s Foreign Ministry told the press that Mnuchin will meet with Chairman of Sovereignty Council Abdel-Fatah Al-Burhan and Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok.
Topping the agenda she said is bilateral aid, debt cancellation and the economic situation in Sudan as well as “other issues of a common nature.”
Sources said that Mnuchin will get a status update on steps towards normalization between Sudan and Israel in accordance with a deal brokered by the US administration last October.
Washington promised Sudan an economic aid package in return to ending hostilities with the Jewish state. The US congress included hundreds of millions of dollars in assistance to Sudan as part of the government funding bill passed last month.
Sudan suffers from a severe economic crisis that manifested in triple-digit inflation and a sharp drop in the exchange rate as well as food and fuel shortages.
The transitional government is eyeing debt relief to ease its $60 billion burden. The relief has been blocked by Sudan’s inclusion in the terror blacklist.
The US said that it will now support Sudan in its quest for debt relief.
“The United States Treasury looks forward to working with bipartisan members of Congress, and with Sudan to help clear its arrears at the International Financial Institutions and to advance Sudan’s efforts to secure debt relief in 2021,” Mnuhcin said in a statement in mid-December after Khartoum was formally delisted.
Source: Sudan Tribune