Chad - Tips

Chad Bureau of African Affairs
June 2007

Background Note: Chad

Women wearing traditionally patterned
dresses walk with their goods to sell
in N'djamena, Chad, February 22,
2006. [© AP Images]

flag of Chad: three equal vertical bands of blue, yellow, and red, with blue
on the hoist side.


Republic of Chad

Area: 1,284,634 sq. km. (496,000 sq. mi.); about twice the size of Texas.
Cities: Capital--N'Djamena (pop. 1 million est.). Other major
cities--Moundou, Abeche, Sarh.
Terrain: Desert, mountainous north, large arid central plain, fertile
lowlands in extreme southern regions.
Climate: Northern desert--very dry throughout the year; central plain--hot
and dry, with brief rainy season mid-June to mid-September; southern
lowlands--warm and more humid with seasonal rains from late May to early

Nationality: Noun and adjective--Chadian(s).
Population (July 2007 est.): 9,885,661.
Annual growth rate (2007 est.): 2.32%.
Density: 6.6 per sq. km. (17 per sq. mi.).
Ethnic groups: 200 distinct groups. In the north and center, Gorane (Toubou,
Daza, Kreda), Zaghawa, Kanembou, Ouaddai, Arabs, Baguirmi, Hadjerai, Fulbe,
Kotoko, Hausa, Boulala, and Maba, most of whom are Muslim. In the south, Sara
(Ngambaye, Mbaye, Goulaye), Moudang, Moussei, Massa, most of whom are
Christian or animist. About 1,000 French citizens live in Chad.
Religions: Muslim 51%, Christian 35%, animist 7%, other indigenous beliefs
Languages: French and Arabic (official); Sara (in the south), more than 120
indigenous Chadian languages and dialects.
Education: Years compulsory--6. Attendance--primary school 68% (1998);
secondary school 5.5% (1995); higher education n/a. Literacy (2003 est.)
Health: Life expectancy (2007 est.)--47.2 yrs. Infant mortality rate (2007
Work force (approximately 48% of population): Agriculture--more than 80%;
largely subsistence agriculture.

Type: Republic.
Independence: August 11, 1960 (from France).
Branches: Executive--president (head of state), prime minister, Council of
Ministers. Legislative--National Assembly (unicameral). Judicial--Supreme
Court; Court of Appeals; criminal courts; magistrate courts president (head
of state, president of the council of ministers), council of ministers.
Major political parties: About 60, of which Patriotic Salvation Movement
(MPS) is dominant. Other major parties include the Federation Action for the
Republic (FAR); Party for Liberty and Development (PLD); Rally for
Development and Progress (RNDP); Union for Democracy and the Republic (UDR);
National Union for Development and Renewal (UNDR); Rally for Democracy and
Progress (RDP); Viva Rally for Development and Progress, or Viva RNDP.
Suffrage: Universal over 18.
Administrative subdivisions: 18 regions.

GDP (2006 est.): $5.255 billion.
Natural resources: Petroleum, natron (sodium carbonate), kaolin, gold,
bauxite, tin, tungsten, titanium, iron ore.
Agriculture (2006 est., 32.5% of GDP): Products--cotton, gum arabic,
livestock, fish, peanuts, millet, sorghum, rice, sweet potatoes, cassava,
dates, manioc. Arable land--30%.
Industry (2006 est., 26.6% of GDP): Types--meat-packing, beer brewing, soap,
cigarettes, construction materials, natron mining, soft-drink bottling.
Services (2006 est.): 40.8% of GDP.
Trade: Exports--$4.342 billion (f.o.b., 2006 est.): oil, cotton, livestock,
gum arabic. Major markets (1999)--Portugal, Germany, Thailand, Costa Rica,
South Africa, France, Nigeria, Cameroon. Imports--$823.1 million (f.o.b.,
2006 est.): petroleum products, machinery and transportation equipment,
foodstuffs, industrial goods, textiles. Major suppliers (2004)--U.S., France,
Cameroon, Nigeria.
Central government budget (2006 est.): Revenues--$617.3 million. Expenditures
--$877.6 million.
Defense (2002): $31 million.
National holiday: Independence Day, August 11.
Fiscal year: Calendar year.
U.S. aid received (2001): Economic, food relief--$238 million from all
sources, (including $30 million committed by African Development Bank.

Chad is a landlocked country in north central Africa measuring 1,284,000
square kilometers (496,000 sq. mi.), roughly three times the size of
California. Most of its ethnically and linguistically diverse population
lives in the south, with densities ranging from 54 persons per square
kilometers in the Logone River basin to 0.1 persons in the northern B.E.T.
desert region, which is larger than France. The capital city of N'Djaména,
situated at the confluence of the Chari and Logone Rivers, is cosmopolitan in
nature, with a current population nearing one million people.

Chad has four bioclimatic zones. The northernmost Saharan zone averages less
than 200 mm (8") of rainfall annually. The sparse human population is largely
nomadic, with some livestock, mostly small ruminants and camels. The central
Sahelian zone receives between 200 and 600 mm (24") rainfall and has
vegetation ranging from grass/shrub steppe to thorny, open savanna. The
southern zone, often referred to as the Sudanian zone, receives between 600
and 1,000 mm (39"), with woodland savanna and deciduous forests for
vegetation. Rainfall in the Guinea zone, located in Chad's southwestern tip,
ranges between 1,000 and 1,200 mm (47").

The country's topography is generally flat, with the elevation gradually
rising as one moves north and east away from Lake Chad. The highest point in
Chad is Emi Koussi, a mountain that rises 3,100 meters (10,200 ft.) in the
northern Tibesti Mountains. The Ennedi Plateau and the Ouaddaï highlands in
the east complete the image of a gradually sloping basin, which descends
toward Lake Chad. There also are central highlands in the Guera region rising
to 1,500 meters (4,900 ft.).

Lake Chad is the second-largest lake in West Africa and is one of the most
important wetlands on the continent. Home to 120 species of fish and at least
that many species of birds, the lake has shrunk dramatically in the last four
decades due to the increased water use and low rainfall. Bordered by Chad,
Niger, Nigeria, and Cameroon, Lake Chad currently covers only 1,350 square
kilometers, down from 25,000 square kilometers in 1963. The Chari and Logone
Rivers, both of which originate in the Central African Republic and flow
northward, provide most of the water entering Lake Chad.

There are more than 200 ethnic groups in Chad. Those in the north and east
are generally Muslim; most southerners are Christians or animists. Through
their long religious and commercial relationships with Sudan and Egypt, many
of the peoples in Chad's eastern and central regions have become more or less
Arabized, speaking Arabic and engaging in many other Arab cultural practices
as well. More than three-quarters of the Chadian population is rural.

Chad has a long and rich history. A humanoid skull found in Borkou was dated
to be more than 3 million years old. Because in ancient times the Saharan
area was not totally arid, Chad's population was more evenly distributed than
it is today. For example, 7,000 years ago, the north central basin, now in
the Sahara, was still filled with water, and people lived and farmed around
its shores. Cliff paintings in Borkou and Ennedi depict elephants,
rhinoceroses, giraffes, cattle, and camels; only camels survive there today.
The region has been known to traders and geographers since the late Middle
Ages. Since then, Chad has served as a crossroads for the Muslim peoples of
the desert and savanna regions, and the animist Bantu tribes of the tropical

Sao people lived along the Chari River for thousands of years, but their
relatively weak chiefdoms were overtaken by the powerful chiefs of what were
to become the Kanem-Bornu and Baguirmi kingdoms. At their peak, these two
kingdoms and the kingdom of Ouaddai controlled a good part of what is now
Chad, as well as parts of Nigeria and Sudan. From 1500 to 1900, Arab slave
raids were widespread. The French first penetrated Chad in 1891, establishing
their authority through military expeditions primarily against the Muslim
kingdoms. The first major colonial battle for Chad was fought in 1900 between
the French Major Lamy and the African leader Rabah, both of whom were killed
in the battle. Although the French won that battle, they did not declare the
territory pacified until 1911; armed clashes between colonial troops and
local bands continued for many years thereafter.

In 1905, administrative responsibility for Chad was placed under a governor
general stationed at Brazzaville in what is now Congo. Although Chad joined
the French colonies of Gabon, Oubangui-Charo, and Moyen Congo to form the
Federation of French Equatorial Africa (AEF) in 1910, it did not have
colonial status until 1920. The northern region of Chad was occupied by the
French in 1914. In 1959, the territory of French Equatorial Africa was
dissolved, and four states--Gabon, the Central African Republic, Congo
(Brazzaville), and Chad--became autonomous members of the French Community.
On August 11, 1960 Chad became an independent nation under its first
president, Francois Tombalbaye.

A long civil war began as a tax revolt in 1965 and soon set the Muslim north
and east against the southern-led government. Even with the help of French
combat forces, the Tombalbaye government was never able to quell the
insurgency. Tombalbaye's rule became more irrational and brutal, leading the
military to carry out a coup in 1975 and to install Gen. Felix Malloum, a
southerner, as head of state. In 1978, Malloum's government was broadened to
include more northerners. Internal dissent within the government led the
northern prime minister, Hissein Habre, to send his forces against the
national army in the capital city of N'Djamena in February 1979. The
resulting civil war amongst the 11 emergent factions was so widespread that
it rendered the central government largely irrelevant. At that point, other
African governments decided to intervene.

A series of four international conferences held first under Nigerian and then
Organization of African Unity (OAU) sponsorship attempted to bring the
Chadian factions together. At the fourth conference, held in Lagos, Nigeria,
in August 1979, the Lagos accord was signed. This accord established a
transitional government pending national elections. In November 1979, the
National Union Transition Government (GUNT) was created with a mandate to
govern for 18 months. Goukouni Oueddei, a northerner, was named President;
Colonel Kamougue, a southerner, Vice President; and Habre, Minister of
Defense. This coalition proved fragile; in January 1980, fighting broke out
again between Goukouni's and Habre's forces. With assistance from Libya,
Goukouni regained control of the capital and other urban centers by year's
end. However, Goukouni's January 1981 statement that Chad and Libya had
agreed to work for the realization of complete unity between the two
countries generated intense international pressure and Goukouni's subsequent
call for the complete withdrawal of external forces. Libya's partial
withdrawal to the Aozou Strip in northern Chad cleared the way for Habre's
forces to enter N'Djamena in June. French troops and an OAU peacekeeping
force of 3,500 Nigerian, Senegalese, and Zairian troops (partially funded by
the United States) remained neutral during the conflict.

Habre continued to face armed opposition on various fronts, and was brutal in
his repression of suspected opponents, massacring and torturing many during
his rule. In the summer of 1983, GUNT forces launched an offensive against
government positions in northern and eastern Chad with Libyan support. In
response to Libya's direct intervention, French and Zairian forces intervened
to defend Habre, pushing Libyan and rebel forces north of the 16th parallel.
In September 1984, the French and the Libyan governments announced an
agreement for the mutual withdrawal of their forces from Chad. By the end of
the year, all French and Zairian troops were withdrawn. Libya did not honor
the withdrawal accord, and its forces continued to occupy the northern third
of Chad.

Southern rebel commando groups (CODO) in southern Chad were broken up by
government massacres in 1984. In 1985 Habre briefly reconciled with some of
his most powerful opponents, including the Chadian Democratic Front and the
Coordinating Action Committee of the Democratic Revolutionary Council.
Goukouni also began to rally toward Habre, and with his support Habre
successfully expelled Libyan forces from most of Chadian territory. A
cease-fire between Chad and Libya held from 1987 to 1988, and negotiations
over the next several years led to the 1994 International Court of Justice
decision granting Chad sovereignty over the Aouzou strip, effectively ending
Libyan occupation.

However, rivalry between Hadjerai, Zaghawa, and Gorane groups within the
government grew in the late 1980s. In April 1989, Idriss Deby, one of Habre's
leading generals and a Zaghawa, defected and fled to Darfur in Sudan, from
which he mounted a Zaghawa-supported series of attacks on Habre (a Gorane).
In December 1990, with Libyan assistance and no opposition from French troops
stationed in Chad, Deby's forces successfully marched on N'Djamena. After 3
months of provisional government, Deby's Patriotic Salvation Movement (MPS)
approved a national charter on February 28, 1991, with Deby as president.

In the following 2 years, Deby faced at least two coup attempts. Government
forces clashed violently with rebel forces (including the Movement for
Democracy and Development, MDD, National Revival Committee for Peace and
Democracy (CSNPD), Chadian national Front (FNT), and the Western Armed
Forces, FAO) near Lake Chad and in southern regions of the country. Earlier
French demands for the country to hold a national conference resulted in the
gathering of 750 delegates representing political parties (legalized in
1992), the government, trade unions, and the army to discuss creation of a
pluralist democratic regime.

Unrest continued, however, sparked in part by large-scale killings of
civilians in southern Chad. The CSNPD, led by Kette Moise and other southern
groups, entered into a peace agreement with government forces in 1994, which
later broke down. Two new groups, the Armed Forces for a Federal Republic
(FARF) led by former Kette ally Laokein Barde and the Democratic Front for
Renewal (FDR), and a reformulated MDD clashed with government forces 1994-95.

Talks with political opponents in early 1996 did not go well, but Deby
announced his intent to hold presidential elections in June. Deby won the
country's first multi-party presidential elections with support in the second
round from opposition leader Kebzabo, defeating General Kamougue (leader of
the 1975 coup against Tombalbaye). Deby's MPS party won 63 of 125 seats in
the January 1997 legislative elections. International observers noted
numerous serious irregularities in presidential and legislative election

By mid-1997 the government signed peace deals with FARF and the MDD
leadership and succeeded in cutting off the groups from their rear bases in
the Central African Republic and Cameroon. Agreements also were struck with
rebels from the National Front of Chad (FNT) and Movement for Social Justice
and Democracy in October 1997. However, peace was short-lived, as FARF rebels
clashed with government soldiers, finally surrendering to government forces
in May 1998. Barde was killed in the fighting, as were hundreds of other
southerners, most civilians.

From 1998 to 2003, Chadian Movement for Justice and Democracy (MDJT) rebels
skirmished periodically with government troops in the Tibesti region,
resulting in hundreds of civilian, government, and rebel casualties, but
little ground won or lost. Following an accord with the government in 2003,
several hundred rebels rejoined the Chadian Army. Armed remnants of the MDJT
linger in the Tibesti region, but no active armed opposition has emerged in
other parts of Chad.

In May 2001, Deby won a flawed 63% first-round victory in presidential
elections after legislative elections were postponed until spring 2002. Six
opposition leaders were arrested (twice), and one opposition party activist
was killed following the announcement of election results. However, despite
claims of government corruption, favoritism of Zaghawas, and security forces
abuses, opposition party and labor union calls for general strikes and more
active demonstrations against the government were unsuccessful.

In May 2004, the National Assembly voted in favor of an amendment to the
Constitution that would allow President Deby to run again. The amendment was
approved in a national referendum June 2005 and abolished presidential term
limits. In April 2006, the capital city of N'djamena was attacked by the
United Front for Democratic Change--which was led by the Tama ethnic
group--coordinating with another Chadian rebel organization from President
Deby's Zaghawa ethnic group. The government put down the attacks. On May 3,
2006 Deby was elected to his third presidential term with a substantial
majority, according to Chadian election officials. Provisional figures showed
Deby receiving 77.6% of the vote. More than 60% of Chad's 5.8 million
registered voters cast ballots.

The constitutional basis for the government is the 1996 Constitution. A
strong executive branch headed by the president dominates the Chadian
political system. Following his December 1990 military overthrow of Hissein
Habre, Idriss Deby in the mid-1990s gradually restored basic functions of
government and entered into agreements with the World Bank and the
International Monetary Fund (IMF) intended to carry out substantial economic
reforms, including the Doba Basin oil extraction project.

The president has the power to appoint the prime minister and the Council of
State (or cabinet), and exercises considerable influence over appointments of
judges, generals, provincial officials and heads of Chad's parastatal firms.
In cases of grave and immediate threat, the president, in consultation with
the National Assembly President and Council of State, may declare a state of
emergency. Most of the Deby's key advisers are members of the Zaghawa clan,
although some southern and opposition personalities are represented in his

According to the 1996 Constitution, National Assembly deputies are elected by
universal suffrage for 4-year terms. Parliamentary elections were last held
in April 2002, with President Deby's MPS party winning a large majority. The
Assembly holds regular sessions twice a year, starting in March and October,
and can hold special sessions as necessary and called by the prime minister.
Deputies elect a president of the National Assembly every 2 years. Assembly
deputies or members of the executive branch may introduce legislation; once
passed by the Assembly, the president must take action to either sign or
reject the law within 15 days. The National Assembly must approve the prime
minister's plan of government and may force the prime minister to resign
through a majority vote of no confidence. However, if the National Assembly
rejects the executive branch's program twice in one year, the president may
disband the Assembly and call for new legislative elections. In practice, the
president exercises considerable influence over the National Assembly through
the MPS party structure.

Despite the Constitution's guarantee of judicial independence from the
executive branch, the president names most key judicial officials. The
Supreme Court is made up of a chief justice, named by the president, and 15
councilors chosen by the president and National Assembly; appointments are
for life. The Constitutional Council, with nine judges elected to 9-year
terms, has the power to review all legislation, treaties and international
agreements prior to their adoption. The Constitution recognizes customary and
traditional law in locales where it is recognized and to the extent it does
not interfere with public order or constitutional guarantees of equality for
all citizens.

Principal Government Officials
President--Idriss Deby
Prime Minister--Nouradine Delwa Kassire Koumakoye
Minister of Foreign Affairs and African Integration--Ahmad Allam-mi
President of the National Assembly--Nassour Guelengdouksia Ouaidou
Ambassador to U.S.--Mahamat Adam Bechir

The Republic of Chad maintains an embassy in the United States at 2002 R
Street, NW, Washington, DC 20009 (tel: 202-462-4009; fax 202-265-1937).

Under President Hissein Habre, members of Gourane, Zaghawa, Kanembou,
Hadjerai, and Massa ethnic groups dominated the military. Idriss Deby, a
member of the minority Zaghawa-related Bidyate clan and a top military
commander, revolted and fled to Sudan, taking with him many Zaghawa and
Hadjerai soldiers in 1989. The forces that Deby led into N'Djamena on
December 1, 1990 to oust President Habre were mainly Zaghawa (including a
large number of Sudanese), many of whom were recruited while Deby was in the
bush. Deby's coalition also included a small number of Hadjerais and

Chad's armed forces numbered about 36,000 at the end of the Habre regime but
swelled to an estimated 50,000 in the early days of Idriss Deby. With French
support, a reorganization of the armed forces was initiated early in 1991
with the goal of reducing the size of the armed forces. An essential element
of this effort was to make the ethnic composition of the armed forces
reflective of the country as a whole. While the military's size has been
reduced to approximately 25,000 soldiers, leadership positions are still
dominated by the Zaghawa.

Following Idriss Deby's rise to power, Habre loyalists continued to fight
government troops and rob civilians around Lake Chad. In the mid- and
late-1990s, a rebellion in the south by the FARF delayed the promised oil
development until crushed by government forces. Most recently, the Movement
for Democracy and Justice in Tchad (MDJT) launched the most serious threat to
Deby's hold on power, but little progress was ever made on either side. In
January 2002, the government and the MDJT signed a formal peace accord.
Although remnants are still present in the North, active rebellion there has
been negligible since late 2003.

Long, porous borders continue to render Chad vulnerable to incursions. In
March 2004, the Algerian terrorist organization, the Salafist Group for
Preaching and Combat (GSPC), strayed into Chadian territory, where they were
engaged by Chadian armed forces. Since the 2003 outbreak of the Darfur crisis
in Sudan, armed militias have occasionally crossed into Chad, resulting in
small-scale skirmishes. In response to such ongoing threats Chad has joined
in the Pan Sahel Initiative (PSI), a U.S. Government military-to-military
assistance program which helps participant countries counter terrorist
operations, border incursions, and trafficking of people, illicit materials,
and other goods. Initial PSI training was completed in Chad in July 2004.

In 2006, Chad's GDP was estimated at approximately $5.255 billion. Oil,
cotton, cattle, and gum arabic are Chad's major exports.

The effects on foreign investment of years of civil war are still felt today,
as investors who left Chad between 1979-82 have only recently begun to regain
confidence in the country's future. The most important economic venture to
date is the Doba Basin oil extraction project in southern Chad. The project
included unique mechanisms for World Bank, private sector, government, and
civil society collaboration to guarantee that future oil revenues would
benefit local populations and result in poverty alleviation.

Oil exploitation in the southern Doba region began in June 2000, with
U.S.-based Exxon Mobil leading a consortium in a $3.7 billion project to
export oil via a 1,000-km. buried pipeline through Cameroon to the Gulf of
Guinea. Beginning in late 2000, development of Chad's petroleum sector
stimulated economic growth by attracting major investment and increased
levels of U.S. trade. Oil revenue began trickling into the country in July
2004. It was hoped that this project would serve as a catalyst for the entire
economy by helping to reduce energy costs and attracting additional trade and
investment in other sectors. However, the question remains whether Chad will
continue to consolidate its economic reforms and invest its oil revenues
wisely in order to encourage a wider range of economic initiatives. Political
controversy surrounding elections and a rebellion in northern Chad also
dampen Chad's economic prospects somewhat by exposing the weaknesses in
Chad's political institutions.

The U.S. Government expressed both concern and disappointment after the
Government of Chad on August 26, 2006 ordered Chevron Oil Corporation and
Petronas, members of the Exxon Mobil-led and operated oil consortium, to
cease operations and leave Chad within 24 hours for alleged non-payment of
income taxes.

Chevron and Petronas entered into a tax agreement in 2000 with the
government, represented by Petroleum Minister Mahamat Hassan Nasser, when
they replaced Elf and Shell as minority members of the consortium. The
companies assert that the agreement authorizes them to use a special
depreciation schedule allowing greater tax deductions than those afforded
consortium partner Exxon Mobil. The Government of Chad, however, claimed that
the 2000 tax agreement was illegal, because it was negotiated by officials
without proper authority and was not vetted by the National Assembly. The
Government of Chad also announced plans to press charges against negotiating
officials, and on August 28, 2006 replaced Nasser, as well as Economic
Minister Mahamat Ali Hassan and Farming Minister Moucktar Moussa. Chevron and
Petronas consider the Government of Chad to have violated its contractual
obligations and planned to seek recourse through all diplomatic and legal
means. While the U.S. takes no position on the merits of the dispute, it has
urged all parties involved to respect any binding contractual commitments.

Despite recent development of the petroleum sector, more than 80% of the work
force is involved in agriculture (subsistence farming, herding, and fishing).
Like many other developing countries, Chad has a small formal sector and a
large, thriving informal sector. Statistics indicate the following
distribution as percentage of GDP: Agriculture--32.5% (farming, livestock,
fishing); industry--26.6%; and services--40.8%. Chad is highly dependent on
foreign assistance. Its principal donors include the European Union, France,
and the multilateral lending agencies.

Primary markets for Chadian exports include neighboring Cameroon and Nigeria
and France, Germany, and Portugal. Aside from oil, cotton remains a primary
export, although exact figures are not available. Rehabilitation of
CotonTchad, the major cotton company that suffered from a decline in world
cotton prices, has been financed by France, the Netherlands, the European
Economic Community (EC), and the International Bank for Reconstruction and
Development (IBRD). The parastatal is now being privatized.

The other major export is livestock, herded to neighboring countries.
Herdsmen in the Sudanic and Sahelian zones raise cattle, sheep, goats, and,
among the non-Muslims, a few pigs. In the Saharan region, only camels and a
few hardy goats can survive. Chad also sells smoked and dried fish to its
neighbors and exports several million dollars worth of gum arabic to Europe
and the United States each year. Other food crops include millet, sorghum,
peanuts, rice, sweet potatoes, manioc, cassava, and yams.

After averaging 0.8% in 1999-2000, Chad's real GDP growth was estimated at
8.9% in 2001, and 10% in 2002 and 2003 as the Doba oil project accelerated.
Inflation rose from 3.7% in 2000 to 12.4% in 2001, dropped to 5.2% in 2002,
and was estimated to level out at 3% in 2004. These fluctuations were due in
large part to increasing demand from the Doba project but also to
fluctuations in agricultural production. After a disappointing agricultural
campaign in 2000, increased production during the 2001-02 timeframe helped
reduce inflation in 2002. In 2003, the contraction in investments, the 7%
appreciation in the CFA Franc exchange rate, and bumper harvests combined to
generate a 1% deflation in place of the projected 4.3% inflation. Chad's
economic performance, at least until the onset of oil exports, continued to
depend on fluctuations in rainfall and in prices of its principal export
commodities, especially cotton.

Since 1995, the Government of Chad has made incremental progress in
implementing structural reforms and improving government finances under two
successive structural adjustment programs. Most state enterprises have been
partially or completely privatized, non-priority public spending has been
lessened, and the government has gradually liberalized some key sectors of
the economy. Liberalization of the telecommunications, cotton, and energy
sectors is expected to proceed over the next several years. Chad reached the
enhanced Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) initiative completion point
in May 2001.

Chad is officially nonaligned but has close relations with France, the former
colonial power, and other members of the Western community. It receives
economic aid from countries of the European Union, the United States, and
various international organizations. Libya supplies aid and has an ambassador
resident in N'Djamena.

Other resident diplomatic missions in N'Djamena include the embassies of
France, the United States, Egypt, Algeria, Iraq, Sudan, Germany, Central
African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Nigeria, Taiwan,
Cameroon, and the European Economic Community. A number of other countries
have nonresident ambassadors. In 1988, Chad recognized the State of
Palestine, which maintains a mission in N'Djamena. Chad has not recognized
the State of Israel.

With the exception of Libya, with which relations are turbulent, Chad has
generally good rapport with its neighbors. Although relations with Libya
improved with the advent of the Deby government, strains persist. Chad has
been an active champion of regional cooperation through the Central African
Economic and Customs Union, the Lake Chad and Niger River Basin Commissions,
and the Interstate Commission for the Fight Against the Drought in the Sahel.

Chad belongs to the following international organizations: UN and some of its
specialized and related agencies; African Union; Central African Customs and
Economic Union (UDEAC); African Financial Community (Franc Zone); Agency for
the Francophone Community; African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States;
African Development Bank; Central African States Development Bank; Economic
and Monetary Union of Central African (CEMAC); Economic Commission for
Africa; G-77; International Civil Aviation Organization; International
Confederation of Free Trade Unions; International Red Cross and Red Crescent
Movement; International Development Association; Islamic Development Bank;
International Fund for Agricultural Development; International Finance
Corporation; International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent
Societies; International Labor Organization; International Monetary Fund;
Interpol; International Olympic Committee; International Telecommunication
Union; NAM; Organization of the Islamic Conference; Organization for the
Prohibition of Chemical Weapons; Universal Postal Union; World Confederation
of Labor; World Intellectual Property Organization; World Meteorological
Organization; World Tourism Organization; World Trade Organization.

Relations between the United States and Chad are good. The American embassy
in N'Djamena, established at Chadian independence in 1960, was closed from
the onset of the heavy fighting in the city in 1980 until the withdrawal of
the Libyan forces at the end of 1981. It was reopened in January 1982. The
U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and the U.S. Information
Service (USIS) offices resumed activities in Chad in September 1983.

The United States enjoys cordial relations with the Deby government. Chad has
proved a valuable partner in the global war on terror, and in providing
shelter to approximately 200,000 refugees of Sudan's Darfur crisis along its
eastern border.

Before permanently closing its Chad mission in 1995 because of declining
funds and security concerns, USAID's development program in Chad concentrated
on the agricultural, health, and infrastructure sectors. It also included
projects in road repair and maintenance, maternal and child health, famine
early warning systems, and agricultural marketing. A number of American
voluntary agencies (notably AFRICARE and VITA) continue to operate in Chad.
Peace Corps has traditionally had a large presence in Chad, with volunteers
arriving during the postwar period in September 1987, then withdrawing in
1998. Peace Corps operations resumed in September 2003, with a group of 20
new volunteers. The second class of 17 volunteers arrived in September 2004.
Both groups focused on teaching English; expansion into other areas was
planned for 2005.

Principal U.S. Officials
Ambassador--Marc Wall
Deputy Chief of Mission--Lucy Tamlyn
Political/Economic Officer--Rebecca Daley
Consular/Economic Officer--Arthur Bell
Management Officer--Sharon James
Public Affairs Officer--Arthur Bell
Regional Security Officer--Bradley Markwald
Defense Attache--Lt. Col. Tim Mitchell

The U.S. Embassy in Chad is located on Avenue Felix Eboue, N'Djamena, (tel:
235-51-70-09, 235-51-90-52, or 235-51-92-33; fax 235-51-56-54).

The U.S. Department of State's Consular Information Program advises Americans
traveling and residing abroad through Consular Information Sheets, Public
Announcements, and Travel Warnings. Consular Information Sheets exist for all
countries and include information on entry and exit requirements, currency
regulations, health conditions, safety and security, crime, political
disturbances, and the addresses of the U.S. embassies and consulates abroad.
Public Announcements are issued to disseminate information quickly about
terrorist threats and other relatively short-term conditions overseas that
pose significant risks to the security of American travelers. Travel Warnings
are issued when the State Department recommends that Americans avoid travel
to a certain country because the situation is dangerous or unstable.

For the latest security information, Americans living and traveling abroad
should regularly monitor the Department's Bureau of Consular Affairs Internet
web site at, where the current Worldwide Caution,
Public Announcements, and Travel Warnings can be found. Consular Affairs
Publications, which contain information on obtaining passports and planning a
safe trip abroad, are also available at For
additional information on international travel, see

The Department of State encourages all U.S citizens who traveling or residing
abroad to register via the State Department's travel registration website or
at the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate abroad. Registration will make your
presence and whereabouts known in case it is necessary to contact you in an
emergency and will enable you to receive up-to-date information on security

Emergency information concerning Americans traveling abroad may be obtained
by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll free in the U.S. and Canada or the regular
toll line 1-202-501-4444 for callers outside the U.S. and Canada.

The National Passport Information Center (NPIC) is the U.S. Department of
State's single, centralized public contact center for U.S. passport
information. Telephone: 1-877-4USA-PPT (1-877-487-2778). Customer service
representatives and operators for TDD/TTY are available Monday-Friday, 7:00
a.m. to 12:00 midnight, Eastern Time, excluding federal holidays.

Travelers can check the latest health information with the U.S. Centers for
Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia. A hotline at 877-FYI-TRIP
(877-394-8747) and a web site at give the
most recent health advisories, immunization recommendations or requirements,
and advice on food and drinking water safety for regions and countries. A
booklet entitled "Health Information for International Travel" (HHS
publication number CDC-95-8280) is available from the U.S. Government
Printing Office, Washington, DC 20402, tel. (202) 512-1800.

Further Electronic Information
Department of State Web Site. Available on the Internet at http://, the Department of State web site provides timely, global
access to official U.S. foreign policy information, including Background
Notes and daily press briefings along with the directory of key officers of
Foreign Service posts and more. The Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC)
provides security information and regional news that impact U.S. companies
working abroad through its website provides a portal to all export-related assistance and market
information offered by the federal government and provides trade leads, free
export counseling, help with the export process, and more.
STAT-USA/Internet, a service of the U.S. Department of Commerce, provides
authoritative economic, business, and international trade information from
the Federal government. The site includes current and historical
trade-related releases, international market research, trade opportunities,
and country analysis and provides access to the National Trade Data Bank. ***********************************************************
See for all Background notes
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