What is the SDP (Sudanese Pound)

SDP (Sudanese Pound) was the national currency for Sudan between 1956 and 1992. The Sudanese pound subdivided into 100 piastres or qirush in Arabic. The Arabic name for the pound is junaih. Sudanese coins had denominations of 1, 5, 10, 20 and 50 piastres, as well as a 1-pound coin. Pound banknotes had 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50-pound denominations.

Breaking Down SDP (Sudanese Pound)

In 1956, the SDP (Sudanese pound) replaced the Egyptian pound at par as the national currency and remained in use until the introduction of the dinar (SDD) in 1992. The dinar circulated between 1992 and 2007. Conversion was set at one dinar to 10 SDP.

Like many currency conversions, it was some time before the dinar entirely replaced the SDP. While the dinar was used extensively in northern Sudan, many merchants and businesses transacted in pounds in southern regions of the country. Other areas of Sudan used the Kenyan shilling.

The Central Bank of Sudan controls minting and circulation of the legal currency, as well as monetary policy and interest rates. The bank also fosters Islamic banking in the region.

History of the Sudanese Pound (SDP)

The history of the Sudanese Pound mirrors changes in the country's politics and governmental control. For example, the introduction of the second Sudanese Pound (SDG) followed a peace agreement between the government and the Sudan People's Liberation Movement. The new Sudanese pound became legal tender in 2007, and was replaced with the third rendition of the pound in 2011. This 2011 change came as South Sudan seceded from the country. After the secession, the government issued new banknotes.

Sudan lies in Northeast Africa. In the late 1880s, the area experienced harsh Egyptian rule which led to revolts and the creation of a caliphate state. The British defeated the caliphate state and governed the region alongside Egypt. In the 1950s, Sudanese nationalism rose, and the country declared its independence in 1956. Following British rule, a series of brutal governments held power. In 1983, the government declared all of Sudan an Islamic state, which antagonized the south and led to a second civil war and South Sudan obtaining independence in 2011. 

Succession left South Sudan with 75% of the area's oil reserves. As a result, Sudan has experienced stagflation: high unemployment and slow economic growth combined with inflation. According to 2017 World Bank data, Sudan registered 4.3% annual GDP growth with a staggering 32.9% yearly inflation deflator. Agriculture employs 80% of the Sudanese population. An estimated 9.6 million people are food insecure and the nation ranks as one of the lowest in the world for human development. 

Sudan is home to the Merowe Dam on the River Nile, the largest hydropower project in Africa and provider of most of the country's electricity. China is Sudan's primary trading partner.