Chad Country Report
Chad's 2018 budget deficit is estimated at USD890 million, with anti-austerity demonstrations likely to increase in 2018. Furthermore, the IMF has delayed funds until 2018, pending debt restructuring. Cutting ties with Qatar in August 2017 will likely reap financial rewards from Saudi Arabia for President Déby's cash-strapped economy, but his commitment to counter-terrorism co-operation with the West could be diluted following cooling relations with the US. The redeployment of troops from Niger to northern Chad indicates a reduced Boko Haram risk to Chadian territory, but a growing threat from Libya-based rebel movements. Spending on security will likely remain a priority and government contractors are likely to face increasing payment risks. A government ban on demonstrationsindicates a growing crackdown on freedoms, instituted by Déby's strong security apparatus.
Chad is landlocked with few decent roads. It has no navigable rivers and imports come from Douala seaport in Cameroon, often taking weeks to arrive. A skilled labour shortage hampers the operational environment, exacerbated by legal requirements for foreign companies' staff to be 98% local, although this can be circumvented. Corruption pervades public affairs and business. Infrastructure improvements, mostly financed by oil revenues, have been on hold due to funding shortages essentially caused by the decline in global oil prices.
Chad was hit by its first-ever terrorist suicide attack in N'Djamena in June 2015 and it has responded by rapidly improving security in the capital and Lake Chad area. In October 2017 it redeployed troops from Niger to its northern Tibesti region indicating a greater threat from militants in that area. In January 2017, the government closed the border with Libya, prompted by a Libya-based insurgency although strong Chadian armed forces mitigate the risk of a government overthrow.
The deteriorating security situation in neighbouring Central African Republic increases the risk of Chadian intervention to protect its southern border. However, regional counter-terrorism co-operation against Islamist militants reduces the risk of interstate war with its neighbours and Chad has scrapped visa requirements for a number of regional countries. Chad's improved relations with its former bitter rival Sudan in 2010 further reduces the risk of interstate conflict and rebel incursions across this border, although the presence of Chadian militants in southern Libya increases the risk of Chadian troops crossing into Libyan territory.
Despite heavy-handed responses by the security forces, civil society protests and workers' strikes have increased since the re-election of President Déby in 2016. In December 2017, the Coalition of Civil Society Organisations rejected a government ban on demonstrations reportedly imposed to stop rebel infiltrations. Government opponents are arbitrarily arrested or jailed without charge. In July 2017, police used live ammunition against youths protesting in Moundou against the arrest of ex-mayor and opposition leader Laoukein Medard. Protests against rising living costs due to Chad's failing economy are likely to continue, posing collateral injury risks to bystanders.
Vaccinations required to enter the country
Proof of vaccination against yellow fever is required for all individuals traveling from a country with risk of yellow fever transmission.
Hepatitis A: A vaccine is available for anyone over one year of age. The vaccine may not be effective for certain people, e.g. those born before 1945 and who lived as a child in a developing country and/or have a past history of jaundice (icterus). These people can instead get a shot of immune globulin (IG) to boost their immunity against the disease.
Hepatitis B: A vaccine is available for children at least two months old.
Diphtheria-Tetanus-Polio: A booster shot should be administered if necessary (once every ten years).
Typhoid Fever: If your travels take you to regions with poor sanitary conditions (for children two years old and up).
Rabies: For prolonged stays in an isolated region (for children from when they can walk).
Meningococcal Meningitis: For prolonged stays, or in case your travels will put you in close contact with a local population affected by an epidemic of the disease (for children over the age of two years).
Malaria: Recommended preventive medication - chloroquine and proguanil (sometimes marketed as Paludrine ) or proguanil and atovaquone (sometimes marketed as Mepron).
For Children: All standard childhood immunizations should be up-to-date. In the case of a long stay, the BCG vaccine is recommended for children over one month and the MMR (measles-mumps-rubella) vaccine for children over nine months.
Flooding is common in many areas of the country, particularly in the south and the east, during the rainy season (July to October).
Despite development efforts, the country suffers from inadequate and degraded road infrastructure - except in N'Djamena where roads are paved. During the rainy season (July to October), roads are generally unreliable, especially in the south.
In N'Djamena and throughout the country, it is advised to drive with doors locked and windows rolled up due to the carjacking risk.
Minimize travel by foot in the capital.
Security checkpoints are common, particularly around sensitive sites (e.g. the airport). Stop at all roadblocks erected by security forces and comply with demands. Note that vehicles with tinted windows are prohibited.
For all travel outside the capital, an authorization from the Ministry of the Interior is necessary. Furthermore, long-distance road travel can be extremely dangerous. Armed highway bandits are active and often violent. Deadly road accidents are common, in part due to the non-observance of traffic laws by other drivers, lack of public lighting, poorly-maintained vehicles, and the lack of medical care facilities. All night travel should be avoided. Furthermore, accidents, particularly fatal ones, can incite a violent reaction from locals.
Outside major cities, travel should be conducted with an all-terrain vehicle (4x4), preferably within a convoy, with adequate supplies of water, food, fuel, spare mechanic parts (tires, cables, etc.), and effective means of communication. Fuel is easy to come by in major cities but difficult elsewhere.
The north of the country in particular lacks decent road infrastructure, with some notable exceptions (e.g. the road linking the Libyan border with Ounianga Kebir and Faya-Largeau and the road linking N'Djamena with Faya-Largeau, Faya, and Abeche). Furthermore, minefields may be present in areas along the border with Libya. Finally, as noted above, the region is difficult to secure due to prevalent illegal trafficking in the area and regular jihadists incursions.
Only 6.4 percent of the population has access to electricity. Even in N'Djamena, power cuts are common.
Means of communication remain unreliable nationwide, including in the capital, due to infrastructural deficiencies. In addition, authorities sometimes cut access to mobile and social networks (e.g. Facebook, Twitter).
The climate is arid in the north of the country, Sahelian in the center, and tropical in the south. In the north days are very hot and nights are cool and the area receives very little rainfall. In the center of the country, the rainy season lasts from March until October. In the south, the rainy season lasts from May until late September. During the dry season (December-April) temperatures are very high (particularly between mid-February and April); the air is dried out by the Harmattan, a hot and dry trade wind from the Sahara that passes over the country from north to south.
There are no emergency services in the country.
Voltage: 220 V ~ 50 Hz