Monthly Archives: May 2013

Trade Opportunities between India and Sudan

Verma

The Ambassador of India H.E. Mr. Sanjay Kumar Verma met the members of Sudanese Businessmen & Employees Federation in the latter’s office in Khartoum. Mr. Bakri Yousif Omer – Secretary General of the Federation introduced the Ambassador to his colleagues. Mr. Verma  candidly shared the opportunities for trade, commerce and capacity building between India and Sudan.

The largest commodity that India exported to Sudan in recent times is Sugar with a growth of 25%. Since the consumption of sugar in Sudan has gone up there is a potential of setting up new plants in Sudan and India could be a partner in these projects. There is no conflict of interest but  is of mutual benefit for capacity building in Sudan by Indian expertise. Next to sugar were items made of iron and zinc which also grew by 7-8%. Three wheelers were also in the increase and almost all were imported from India. Pharmaceuticals and particularly vaccines were imported from India which grew by 11%. COMESA was the single largest importer of vaccines and pharmaceuticals from India. The other sector which was imported by Sudan from India was Plastic/ PVC products. There is also a potential for capacity building for plastics in Sudan, rather than importing from elsewhere.

What has India been importing from Sudan?  80% of it was crude oil. Now this $300 million gap has to be filled by Sudan. The other commodity which was imported by India from Sudan was Rough Teak Wood which amounted to $13-14 million. This too was from South Sudan.  Scrap (mainly Iron, Aluminium and Copper) was also another import from Sudan worth $12-13 million. Gum Arabic was also imported which grew by 33%. India could partner Sudan for the Cotton industry. It can do much better than the $ 1.5 million.

The unique variety of Sesame of Sudan is another commodity Sudan can export to India. Sudan stands second after China from where India imports ‘Leather goods’. This can be more than $0.3 million. Even the import of Chickpeas can be achieved more than the actual $0.3 million. All above data are for the period April’12 to Dec’12 which has been extrapolated for the Indian financial year April’12 to Mar’13.

30% of India’s total imports are Crude Oil & LPG. Anything that can be pumped out from Sudan to India is welcome.  The total quantity of gold imported by India last year was 900 tons. India could partner Sudan by not only importing gold but also setting up a Gold refinery. India is the 11th largest importer of Copper ore and concentrates. Indian imports Sunflower oil and Sudan has excellent crop of Sunflower. Sudan can look at this segment including processing units. India imports Chickpeas and lentils. Sudan can boost the exports to India in these opportunity segments.

While answering the queries from members of Sudanese Businessmen & Employers Federation, Ambassador Verma explained that Reserve Bank of India has no directives to dishonor LCs from Sudan. The Government is looking into this issue to come out with a comprehensive solution. He however suggested that Indian Banks accept Middle East Currencies apart from US Dollars and Euro. The Ambassador also announced that Visa to India is actually issued in three working days.

Mr. Mamoun Gamal Managing Director of Citipharma acknowledged the points made by the Ambassador at the end of the meeting.

Herbal Medicines in Sudan

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If you ask anyone about Salah Mahjoub AlKhalifa in the south of Droshab in the outskirts of Khartoum North, you will be directed to his residence. People from Egypt and Saudi Arabia come to visit him to buy his concoctions made of Cinnamon, Ginger, Honey, Garlic, Henna seeds and Maize.

Salah Mahjoub Alkhalifa was a teacher. In the year 1995 he was affected with Goitre a thyroid disease. He was admitted in the hospital for surgery but at the last moment he left the hospital and started his own treatment with a combination of cinnamon and ginger powder. He was totally cured.

Since then Salah has been treating other patients of various diseases with natural ingredients mainly herbs, spices and food substances. It was then Dr. Abdel Rahman Al-Esha , six years ago in 2006, had come to Salah with his neuralgic pain. When he received treatment and complete cure, it became a turning point for him. He took interest in this school of treatment and there was no looking back since then.

Dr.Abdel Rahman runs the clinic on Fridays and Saturdays with a team of professionals comprising medical doctors, pharmacists and lab technicians. During the week days Dr.Abdel Rahman works in the Directorate of Research in the Sudanese Ministry of Health. He holds two master degrees in Community Medicine and Social and Preventive Medicine. Dr.Abdel Rahman treats  patients of five categories namely Thyroid group; Hypersensitivity group ( bronchial asthma, psoriasis and eczema); Central Nervous System group ( epilepsy, cranial nerve, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s); Infertility and hormones group and the Hemiplegic and thrombus group. All of them are chronic ailments.

Dr.Abdel Rahman has maintained the records of almost 1000 patients that he has treated in the last 6 years. Lab reports of pre –treatment and post-treatment reveal the efficacy of the nutrient ingredients given in different combinations and dosages. Dr.Abdel Rahman mentioned two cases. The first one was about a  lady who was treated for Goitre and had a concurrent disorder of infertility. With the same treatment she was not only completely cured of her Goitre but she also conceived for the first time after several years. Second, about the gentleman from Saudi Arabia who came for treatment of Hemoplegia, after being informed about this place from the internet. He received complete cure within three months and has been sending other patients from KSA.

The consultation fees are 60 SDG and the therapy costs approximately 150 SDG per month. Dr.Abdel Rahman has received patent for all five groups of therapy with acknowledgement from the Medicinal and Aromatic Plants Research Institute and patent certification from the Ministry of Justice, Government of Sudan. When asked about setting up a manufacturing unit for his Neutraceuticals, Dr.Abdel Rahman said he was open to foreign investors in his project.        Image