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Chad Economy 1996

    • Overview:
      Climate, geographic remoteness, poor resource endowment, and lack of infrastructure make Chad one of the most underdeveloped countries in the world. Its economy is hobbled by political turmoil, conflict with Libya, drought, and food shortages. Consequently the economy has shown little progress in recent years in overcoming a severe setback brought on by civil war in the late 1980s. More than 80% of the work force is involved in subsistence farming and fishing. Cotton is the major cash crop, accounting for at least half of exports. Chad is highly dependent on foreign aid, especially food credits, given chronic shortages in several regions. Of all the Francophone countries in Africa, Chad has benefited the least from the 50% devaluation of their currencies on 12 January 1994. Despite an increase in external financial aid and favorable price increases for cotton - the primary source of foreign exchange - the corrupt and enfeebled government bureaucracy continues to dampen economic enterprise by neglecting payments to domestic suppliers and public sector salaries. Oil production in the Lake Chad area remains a distant prospect and the subsistence-driven economy probably will continue to limp along in the near term.

    • National product:
      GDP - purchasing power parity - $2.8 billion (1993 est.)

    • National product real growth rate:
      3.5% (1993 est.)

    • National product per capita:
      $530 (1993 est.)

    • Inflation rate (consumer prices):
      -4.1% (1992)

    • Unemployment rate:

    • Budget:

        $120 million

        $363 million, including capital expenditures of $104 million (1992 est.)

    • Exports:
      $190 million (f.o.b., 1992)

        cotton 48%, cattle 35%, textiles 5%, fish

        France, Nigeria, Cameroon

    • Imports:
      $261 million (f.o.b., 1992)

        machinery and transportation equipment 39%, industrial goods 20%, petroleum products 13%, foodstuffs 9%; note - excludes military equipment

        US, France, Nigeria, Cameroon

    • External debt:
      $492 million (December 1990 est.)

    • Industrial production:
      growth rate 2.7% (1992 est.); accounts for nearly 15% of GDP

    • Electricity:

        40,000 kW

        80 million kWh

        consumption per capita:
        13 kWh (1993)

    • Industries:
      cotton textile mills, slaughterhouses, brewery, natron (sodium carbonate), soap, cigarettes

    • Agriculture:
      accounts for about 45% of GDP; largely subsistence farming; cotton most important cash crop; food crops include sorghum, millet, peanuts, rice, potatoes, manioc; livestock - cattle, sheep, goats, camels; self-sufficient in food in years of adequate rainfall

    • Economic aid:

        US commitments, including Ex-Im (FY70-89), $198 million; Western (non-US) countries, ODA and OOF bilateral commitments (1970-89), $1.5 billion; OPEC bilateral aid (1979-89), $28 million; Communist countries (1970-89), $80 million

    • Currency:
      1 CFA franc (CFAF) = 100 centimes

    • Exchange rates:
      Communaute Financiere Africaine Francs (CFAF) per US$1 - 529.43 (January 1995), 555.20 (1994), 283.16 (1993), 264.69 (1992), 282.11 (1991), 272.26 (1990)

        beginning 12 January 1994 the CFA franc was devalued to CFAF 100 per French franc from CFAF 50 at which it had been fixed since 1948

    • Fiscal year:
      calendar year

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