Economy of Chad

Landlocked Chad's economic development suffers from its geographic remoteness, drought, lack of infrastructure, and political turmoil. About 85% of the population depends on agriculture, including the herding of livestock. Of Africa's Francophone countries, Chad benefited least from the 50% devaluation of their currencies in January 1994. Financial aid from the World Bank, the African Development Bank, and other sources is directed largely at the improvement of agriculture, especially livestock production. Because of lack of financing, the development of oil fields near Doba, originally due to finish in 2000, was delayed until 2003. It was finally developed and is now operated by Exxon Mobil Corporation.

Economy of Chad
Tailor in Chad
A tailor in Chad
CurrencyCentral African CFA franc (XAF)
Calendar year
Trade organisations
GDP$11.02 billion (2012 est.)
GDP growth
2.8% (2015), -6.3% (2016),
-3.0% (2017e), 2.6% (2018f) [1]
GDP per capita
$885.11 (2012 est.)
GDP by sector
agriculture: 52.7%; industry: 6.7%; services: 40.6% (2011 est.)
2% (2011 est.)
Population below poverty line
80% (2001 est.)
Labour force
4.293 million (2007)
Labour force by occupation
agriculture: 80% (subsistence farming, herding, and fishing); industry and services: 20% (2006 est.)
Main industries
oil, cotton textiles, meatpacking, brewing, natron (sodium carbonate), soap, cigarettes, construction materials
180th (2017)[2]
Exports$4.114 billion (2011 est.)
Export goods
oil, cattle, cotton, gum arabic
Main export partners
 United States 58.5%
 India 13.3%
 Japan 11.3%
 China 4.1% (2015)[3]
Imports$3.512 billion (2011 est.)
Import goods
machinery and transportation equipment, industrial goods, foodstuffs, textiles
Main import partners
 France 16.5%
 China 14.2%
 Cameroon 11%
 United States 6.4%
 India 6%
 Belgium 5.7%
 Italy 4.8% (2015)[4]
FDI stock
$4.5 billion (2006 est.)
$1.769 billion (2011 est.)
Public finances
Revenues$2.501 billion (2011 est.)
Expenses$3.482 billion (2011 est.)
Economic aid$238.3 million (recipient) note - $125 million committed by Taiwan (1997); $30 million committed by African Development Bank; ODA $150 million (2001)
Foreign reserves
$887.5 million (31 December 2011 est.)
Main data source: CIA World Fact Book
All values, unless otherwise stated, are in US dollars.

Macro-economic trend

The following table shows the main economic indicators in 1980–2017.

Year[5] 1980 1985 1990 1995 2000 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
GDP in $
1.90 Bln. 3.04 Bln. 4.41 Bln. 5.77 Bln. 7.12 Bln. 16.09 Bln. 16.69 Bln. 17.70 Bln. 18.60 Bln. 19.51 Bln. 22.44 Bln. 22.93 Bln. 25.41 Bln. 27.30 Bln. 29.71 Bln. 30.56 Bln. 28.96 Bln. 28.55 Bln.
GDP per capita in $
433 610 781 874 952 1,781 1,802 1,864 1,911 1,956 2,195 2,188 2,366 2,480 2,633 2,642 2,443 2,344
GDP Growth
−6.0 % 7.9 % 3.2 % −0.8 % −0.9 % 28.5 % 0.6 % 3.3 % 3.1 % 4.1 % 13.6 % 0.1 % 8.8 % 5.8 % 6.9 % 1.8 % −6.4 % −3.1 %
Government debt
(Percentage of GDP)
... ... ... ... 68 % 28 % 26 % 22 % 20 % 32 % 30 % 31 % 29 % 31 % 42 % 44 % 52 % 53 %

Other statistics

GDP: purchasing power parity - $28.62 billion (2017 est.)

GDP - real growth rate: -3.1% (2017 est.)

GDP - per capita: $2,300 (2017 est.)

Gross national saving: 15.5% of GDP (2017 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 52.3% (2017 est.)
industry: 14.7% (2017 est.)
services: 33.1% (2017 est.)

Population below poverty line:: 46.7% (2011 est.)

Distribution of family income - Gini index: 43.3 (2011 est.)

Inflation rate (consumer prices): -0.9% (2017 est.)

Labor force: 5.654 million (2017 est.)

Labor force - by occupation: agriculture 80%, industry and services 20% (2006 est.)

revenues: 1.337 billion (2017 est.)
expenditures: 1.481 billion (2017 est.)

Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-): -1.5% (of GDP) (2017 est.)

Public debt: 52.5% of GDP (2017 est.)

Industries: oil, cotton textiles, brewing, natron (sodium carbonate), soap, cigarettes, construction materials

Industrial production growth rate: -4% (2017 est.)

electrification: total population: 4% (2013)

electrification: urban areas: 14% (2013)

electrification: rural areas: 1% (2013)

Electricity - production: 224.3 million kWh (2016 est.)

Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 98%
hydro: 0%
nuclear: 0%
other renewable: 3% (2017)

Electricity - consumption: 208.6 million kWh (2016 est.)

Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2016 est.)

Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2016 est.)

Agriculture - products: cotton, sorghum, millet, peanuts, sesame, corn, rice, potatoes, onions, cassava (manioc, tapioca), cattle, sheep, goats, camels

Exports: $2.464 billion (2017 est.)

Exports - commodities: oil, livestock, cotton, sesame, gum arabic, shea butter

Exports - partners: US 38.7%, China 16.6%, Netherlands 15.7%, UAE 12.2%, India 6.3% (2017)

Imports: $2.16 billion (2017 est.)

Imports - commodities: machinery and transportation equipment, industrial goods, foodstuffs, textiles

Imports - partners: China 19.9%, Cameroon 17.2%, France 17%, US 5.4%, India 4.9%, Senegal 4.5% (2017)

Debt - external: $1.724 billion (31 December 2017 est.)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold: $22.9 million (31 December 2017 est.)

See also


  1. ^ "World Bank forecasts for Chad, June 2018 (p. 153)" (PDF). World Bank. Retrieved 11 September 2018.
  2. ^ "Ease of Doing Business in Chad". Retrieved 23 January 2017.
  3. ^ "Export Partners of Chad". CIA World Factbook. 2015. Retrieved 26 July 2016.
  4. ^ "Import Partners of Chad". CIA World Factbook. 2015. Retrieved 26 July 2016.
  5. ^ "Report for Selected Countries and Subjects". Retrieved 24 August 2018.

External links

Bank of Central African States

The Bank of Central African States (French: Banque des États de l'Afrique Centrale, BEAC) is a central bank that serves six central African countries which form the Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa:


Central African Republic


Equatorial Guinea


Republic of the CongoPhilibert Andzembe of Gabon was Governor of the BEAC from July 2007 until October 2009, when he was fired by the new president of Gabon, Ali Bongo, in response to a bank scandal in which $28.3 million went missing from the bank's Paris branch. Jean Félix Mamalepot, also from Gabon, was Governor for preceding 17 years.In December 2010, a WikiLeaks memo dated July 7, 2009, said that Gabonese officials working for the Bank of Central African States stole US$36 million over a period of five years from the pooled reserves, giving much of the money to members of France's two main political parties.

CFA franc

The CFA franc (in French: franc CFA [fʁɑ̃ seɛfɑ], or colloquially franc) is the name of two currencies, the West African CFA franc, used in eight West African countries, and the Central African CFA franc, used in six Central African countries. Both currencies are guaranteed by the French treasury. Although separate, the two CFA franc currencies have always been at parity and are effectively interchangeable. The ISO currency codes are XAF for the Central African CFA franc and XOF for the West African CFA franc.

Both CFA francs have a fixed exchange rate to the euro: 100 CFA francs = 1 former French (nouveau) franc = 0.152449 euro; or 1 € = 6.55957 FRF = 655.957 CFA francs exactly.

Commercial Bank Chad

Commercial Bank Chad , also spelled as Commercial Bank Tchad (CBT), is a commercial bank in the Republic of Chad. It is a member of the Commercial Bank Group and is affiliated with the Commercial Bank of Cameroon (CBC), Commercial Bank Centrafrique (CBCA), the Commercial Bank Equatorial Guinea (CBGE) and Commercial Bank São Tomé and Príncipe (CBSTP).


The Société cotonnière du Tchad, also called Cotontchad, is a parastatal Chadian company operating in a monopoly regime that buys and exports all the cotton produced in Chad. Cotton represents 40% of the country's exports and in past years has been even more dominant.

It was created in 1971 from the nationalisation of the Franco-Belgian society Cotonfran and had the task to collect, buy, gin, transport and export the cotton crop.

At present the state owns 75% of the company, the French Textile Development Company (Compagnie Française pour le Développement des Textiles or CFDT) 16%, a consortium of Chadian banks 6% and the French Development Agency 2%.The CFDT's main role is to market Chad's cotton on the world market, while private banks provide the credits necessary to Cotontchad and to the peasants to finance the opening of each planting season and especially to provide capital for the import and distribution of fertilisers and insecticides. Originally the producers were protected from market fluctuations by the Cotton Price Stabilization Board (Caisse de Stabilisation des Prix du Coton or CSPC), created in 1968, whose task was to stabilise prices paid to peasant producers by funding operating losses incurred by Cotontchad. Assuring a constant price to the producer not only helped maintain a certain level of production for Cotontchad but also limited costs to the company by holding down producer prices. But the recession that hit the cotton market between 1991 and 1993 drastically reduced the activities of the company and led to the abolition of the CSPC in 1993 and the decision to let the prices of the cotton bought by the producers fluctuate freely, following the market. Notwithstanding, economic difficulties have continued to hamper the company to the point that its privatisation is often discussed.

Cotton Price Stabilization Board

The Cotton Price Stabilization Board (French: Caisse de Stabilisation des Prix du Coton, CSPC) was a Chadian governative board created in 1968. Its task was to stabilize prices paid to peasant producers by funding operating losses incurred by Cotontchad, the parastatal giant that bought, ginned and sold all the cotton produced in Chad. The CSPC also played an important role in the program to improve yields: it is estimated that between 1971 and 1983 57% of all payments by the CSPC were made in conjunction with the program to improve cotton production. As for the funding of the CSPC, between 1971 and 1983, virtually all income to the CSPC derived from rebates paid by Cotontchad into the system. After 1984 the sharply reduced income of Cotontchad made the system for paying the producers heavily dependent on external sources of funds (such as Stabex), while the government completely exempted Cotontchad from the rebates to the CSPC. The difficulties of the CSPC, whose staffs had already been considerably reduced in the late 1980s, came to a head with the great recession that hit the cotton market between 1991 and 1993, leading to the abolition of the board in 1993. It was decided to let the prices paid to the producers fluctuate freely, following the international price of cotton.

Cotton production in Chad

Cotton is an important crop to the economy of Chad.

Economic Community of Central African States

The Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS; French: Communauté Économique des États de l'Afrique Centrale, CEEAC; Spanish: Comunidad Económica de los Estados de África Central, CEEAC; Portuguese: Comunidade Económica dos Estados da África Central, CEEAC) is an Economic Community of the African Union for promotion of regional economic co-operation in Central Africa. It "aims to achieve collective autonomy, raise the standard of living of its populations and maintain economic stability through harmonious cooperation".

Elephant hunting in Chad

Elephant hunting or elephant poaching and exploitation of the ivory trade are illegal in Chad and pose a major threat to elephant populations. The profitable ivory industry is also a threat to the lives of rangers, even in the national parks, such as Zakouma National Park, the worst-affected area.

Fishing in Chad

Lake Chad, with its two major rivers and many runoff zones, was ranked high among Africa's producers of inland freshwater fish in the 1970s. With the drought and diversion of the waters of some rivers, however, production declined in the 1980s. Traditionally, fish have been an important source of protein for those living along the rivers and lakes, and fishing was also a means of earning money. Because it was practiced in an entirely traditional manner and totally outside the control of government or modern commercial enterprises, there was no accurate statistical information on fishing.

In the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s, total production of fish was estimated at between 60,000 and 120,000 tons per year. But because these figures represent production for the Logone River and Lake Chad, which are shared with Cameroon, Niger, and Nigeria, Chad's fish production amounted to an estimated 70 percent of the total. The largest part of the catch – perhaps two-thirds – was consumed locally. In areas adjacent to urban centers, some portion - usually the best of the catch, such as large Nile perch (called capitaine in Chad) – was marketed fresh. Along Lake Chad and the river borders with Cameroon, the surplus catch was dried, salted, or smoked before being sold. Between 1976 and 1985, production of dried, salted, or smoked fish was estimated at 20,000 tons annually, representing from 20 to 25 percent of Chad's total annual catch. A large share of the commerce in preserved fish was carried on with markets in Cameroon and Nigeria. Small dried or salted fish called salanga were most popular on the markets of Cameroon. Larger smoked fish called banda were generally exported to the major Nigerian market of Maiduguri.

Through the mid-1980s, Chad had taken few steps to control or modernize fishing or to promote fish conservation, although some plans had been made in the 1960s and 1970s. Perhaps the most significant innovation applied by Chadian fishermen has been their use of nylon netting, which began in the 1960s. During the periods of conflict, no government plans could be carried out to control fishing. Although considerable potential existed for the development of the Chadian fishing industry, because of insufficient government interest traditional production and marketing of freshwater fish was likely to remain unchanged for the near term.

Forestry in Chad

Like most states of the African Sahel, Chad has suffered desertification—the encroachment of the desert. Traditional herding practices and the need for firewood and wood for construction have exacerbated the problem. In the early 1980s, the country possessed between 135,000 and 160,000 square kilometres of forest and woodlands, representing a decline of almost 14% from the early 1960s. To what extent this decline was caused by climatic changes and to what extent by herding and cutting practices is unknown. Regulation was difficult because some people traditionally made their living selling wood and charcoal for fuel and wood for construction to people in the urban center. Although the government attempted to limit wood brought into the capital, the attempts have not been well managed, and unrestricted cutting of woodlands remained a problem.

List of companies of Chad

Chad is a landlocked country in Central Africa. Chad's currency is the CFA franc. In the 1960s, the Mining industry of Chad produced sodium carbonate, or natron. There have also been reports of gold-bearing quartz in the Biltine Prefecture. However, years of civil war have scared away foreign investors; those who left Chad between 1979 and 1982 have only recently begun to regain confidence in the country's future. In 2000 major direct foreign investment in the oil sector began, boosting the country's economic prospects.

Manufacturing in Chad

Manufacturing in Chad was dominated by agribusiness, and Cotontchad in particular. Next in importance were the National Sugar Company of Chad (Société Nationale Sucrière du Tchad—SONASUT), the Chadian Textile Company (Société Tchadienne de Textile—STT), the Logone Breweries (Brasseries du Logone—BdL), and the Cigarette Factory of Chad (Manufacture des Cigarettes du Tchad—MCT). Observers estimated that these five industries generated some 20 percent of GDP. Of lesser importance were the Farcha Slaughterhouse (Abattoir Frigorifique de Farcha), the Industrial Agricultural Equipment Company (Société Industrielle de Matériel Agricole du Tchad—SIMAT), and Soft Drinks of Chad (Boissons Gazeuses du Tchad—BGT).

Before the warfare of the 1979-82 period, Chad's industrial sector included between 80 and 100 small and medium enterprises, in addition to the major manufacturing industries. Most of these processed agricultural products, or competed in the import/export trade. About half were local subsidiaries of foreign-owned firms or were Chadian firms with significant foreign capital. The foreign-owned distributorships sold agricultural equipment, construction materials, and petroleum products.

Mining industry of Chad

The only mineral exploited in Chad was sodium carbonate, or natron. Also called sal soda or washing soda, natron was used as a salt for medicinal purposes, as a preservative for hides, and as an ingredient in the traditional manufacture of soap; herders also fed it to their animals. Natron deposits were located around the shore of Lake Chad and the wadis of Kanem Prefecture.

Natron occurs naturally in two forms: white and black. More valuable commercially, hard blocks of black natron were exported to Nigeria. White natron was sold on local markets, principally in N'Djamena and farther to the south. Although efforts were made in the late 1960s to control the commercialization of natron through the creation of a parastatal, by 1970 those efforts had failed because of resistance by traditional chiefs and traders who controlled production through a system of perpetual indebtedness.

A number of other mineral deposits are known, but none had been commercially exploited by the mid-1980s. Bauxite is found in the soudanian zone, and gold-bearing quartz is reported in Biltine Prefecture. Uranium is reported in the Aozou Strip, as are tin and tungsten in other parts of the Tibesti Mountains, but exploration reports in 1971 for these three minerals did not indicate large or rich deposits. As of 1987, conflicts in the region prevented further exploration.

By far the potentially most important resource is oil. In 1970, a consortium of Conoco, Shell, Chevron, and Exxon started exploration and in 1974 discovered minor oil deposits at Sédigi, near Rig Rig, to the north of Lake Chad. Total reserves at Sédigi were estimated at 60 million tons, or roughly 438 million barrels (69,600,000 m3) of oil. Exploration in 1985 by the Exxon-led consortium discovered potentially large deposits near Doba in the southern region of Chad. Further efforts were suspended in 1986 when world oil prices continued to drop, although the consortium maintained a liaison office in N'Djamena in 1988.

Plans existed in the late 1970s to exploit the deposits at Sédigi and to construct a small refinery at N'Djamena. Those plans lapsed during the conflicts of the late 1970s and early 1980s but were revived in 1986 by the government with the support of the World Bank. The reasons for proceeding with plans to exploit these deposits and build a refinery were clear. The cost of importing petroleum products exceeded the cost of extracting and refining domestic crude, even when international oil prices were low. The plans, which anticipated operations to begin in the early 1990s, included well development in the Sédigi field, a pipeline to N'Djamena, a refinery with a 2,000- to 5,000 barrels per day (790 m3/d) capacity, and the transformation or acquisition of power-generating equipment in the capital to burn the refinery's residual fuel oil. The refinery's output would satisfy 80 percent of Chad's annual fuel needs, including all gasoline, diesel, butane, and kerosene; lubricants and jet fuel, however, would still have to be imported.

Petroleum industry in Chad

Chad maintains sizable reserves of crude oil which, alongside agriculture, makes up the largest share of the landlocked former French colony's export revenue. Producing around 100,000 barrels of oil a day, most of Chad's crude comes from its reserves in the Doba Basin in southern Chad where oil was discovered in the early 1970s by foreign drillers. There is an estimated one billion barrels of oil in Chad, most of it being exploited by hundreds of rigs operated by Western companies such as Exxon-Mobil and Royal Dutch Shell. However, many challenges exist to Chad's petroleum industry including but not limited to corruption, internal conflict, and geography. Since Chad is landlocked, most of Chad's oil exports are transported out of the country by a pipeline that leads to the Cameroonian port city of Kribi. This pipeline, owned by a consortium, has come under fire due to allegations of exploitation by international corruption watchdogs, and Chadian politicians. In addition, environmentalists have voiced their concerns over the pipeline's impact on the natural environment, citing several spills.

Rail transport in Chad

Up to 2012 Chad had no rail system. Two lines are planned to Sudan and Cameroon from the capital with construction expected to start in February 2016 and be complete in 4 years.

Telecommunications in Chad

Telecommunications in Chad include radio, television, fixed and mobile telephones, and the Internet.

Transport in Chad

Transport infrastructure within Chad is generally poor, especially in the north and east of the country. River transport is limited to the south-west corner. As of 2011 Chad had no railways though two lines are planned - from the capital to the Sudanese and Cameroonian borders.during the wet season, especially in the southern half of the country. In the north, roads are merely tracks across the desert and land mines continue to present a danger. Draft animals (horses, donkeys and camels) remain important in much of the country.

Fuel supplies can be erratic, even in the south-west of the country, and are expensive. Elsewhere they are practically non-existent.

Utilities in Chad

In the late 1980s, public utilities in Chad were extremely limited. The Chadian Water and Electricity Company (Société Tchadienne d'Eau et d'Electricité—STEE), was the major public utility company. The government held 82 percent of the shares and CCCE held 18 percent. STEE provided water and electricity to the four main urban areas, N'Djamena, Moundou, Sarh, and Abéché. The company supplied water, but not electricity, to six other towns. Despite old equipment and high maintenance costs, STEE was able to meet about half of peak demand, which increased significantly from 1983 to 1986. Production of electricity rose by 35 percent from 1983 to 1986, and the supply of water increased by 24 percent during the same period. In 1986 STEE produced 62.1 million kilowatt-hours of electricity and supplied 10.8 million cubic meters of water.

In N'Djamena the majority of households had access to water. There were, however, only about 3,000 officially connected customers, a good proportion of which were collective customers. There were also an estimated 1,500 illegal water connections. The rest of the people received water from standpipes. Some 5,000 customers were officially connected for electricity in the capital in 1986, with an unknown number of illegal connections. Because electricity was so expensive and because electrical appliances were beyond the means of most people, the consumption of power per household was low. The high cost of electricity also hindered the expansion of small- and medium-sized enterprises.

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