Cashless Africa Post COVID-19? Sudan Embraces Digital Payments to Build a More Inclusive Economy

Cashless Africa 2020 is a continuous discussion point for African leaders and the World Health Organization post COVID-19. The Republic of Sudan announced today a new commitment to accelerate the transition from cash to digital payments as part of its vision to transform its economy. By joining the United Nations-based Better Than Cash Alliance (, the government commits to increasing financial inclusion and transparency, taking steps to build an economy that benefits all citizens.

Moving from cash to responsible digital payments is central to the government’s economic recovery and reform strategy. In particular, digital payments will be critical to the success of the recently announced Sudan Family Support Program, which will provide monthly direct digital transfers to around 80 percent of Sudanese families. The Program seeks to spur economic growth, reduce poverty, and improve food security and health throughout the country.

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“Digital payments will improve financial inclusion and transparency throughout Sudan’s vast territory, especially in conflict-affected regions, help stem corruption, and build a more direct link between citizens and the state,” said Dr. Ibrahim Elbadawi, the Minister of Finance and Economic Planning. “This digital transition will ensure equitable access to resources and government services, and revitalize the private sector, which are central to our efforts to achieve a just and lasting peace and revive the national economy,” Dr. Elbadawi added. The transition to digital payments is in line with the Government of Sudan’s intention to establish the multi-ministerial Digital Transformation Agency, which will spearhead the modernization of government services, including the Family Support Program.

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