Year
Chad
x

    Chad

    Capital

    N'Djamena

    Population

    15,946,876

    Area

    1,284,000 km²

    Geography type

    Landlocked

    Gross domestic product (GDP)

    USD 11,314.95 million

    GDP per capita

    $710.00

    Income group

    Low income

    5.860.02

    Criminality Score

    17th of 54 African countries

    4th of 11 Central Africa countries

    Criminal market

    5.350.30

    Human Trafficking

    7.001.00

    Human Smuggling

    7.002.00

    Arms Trafficking

    8.00-0.50

    Flora Crimes

    1.500.00

    Fauna Crimes

    3.50-1.50

    Non-Renewable Resource Crimes

    7.003.00

    Heroin Trade

    2.00-1.50

    Cocaine Trade

    4.500.50

    Cannabis Trade

    6.000.00

    Synthetic Drug Trade

    7.000.00

    Criminal Actors

    6.38-0.25

    Mafia-Style Groups

    5.50-2.50

    Criminal Networks

    6.500.00

    State-Embedded Actors

    8.501.50

    Foreign Actors

    5.000.00

    2.460.42

    Resilience Score

    43rd of 54 African countries

    7th of 11 Central Africa countries

    Political Leadership and Governance

    3.500.50

    Government Transparency and Accountability

    2.500.50

    International Cooperation

    5.002.50

    National Policies and Laws

    2.500.00

    Judicial System and Detention

    2.000.00

    Law Enforcement

    2.501.00

    Territorial Integrity

    3.500.00

    Anti-Money Laundering

    2.000.00

    Economic Regulatory Capacity

    2.000.00

    Victim and Witness Support

    1.000.00

    Prevention

    1.000.00

    Non-State Actors

    2.000.50

    2.4583333333333 6.375 5.35 2.4583333333333 6.375 5.35

    2.460.42

    Resilience Score

    43rd of 54 African countries

    7th of 11 Central Africa countries

    Political Leadership and Governance

    3.500.50

    Government Transparency and Accountability

    2.500.50

    International Cooperation

    5.002.50

    National Policies and Laws

    2.500.00

    Judicial System and Detention

    2.000.00

    Law Enforcement

    2.501.00

    Territorial Integrity

    3.500.00

    Anti-Money Laundering

    2.000.00

    Economic Regulatory Capacity

    2.000.00

    Victim and Witness Support

    1.000.00

    Prevention

    1.000.00

    Non-State Actors

    2.000.50

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    People

    Human trafficking is very prevalent in Chad, particularly at the borders with Sudan and Libya. Human trafficking for the purposes of labour exploitation is largely linked to the extractive industries, including gold mining and charcoal production, and also to domestic servitude and artisanal fishing. Sexual exploitation occurs, but to a lesser extent. While human trafficking in Chad is largely internal, an increased number of Chadian sex workers have been noted in neighbouring countries. This suggests that human-trafficking networks operating in Chad are diversifying their geographical focus. The use of deception has also been reported in the recruitment and transportation of young men and boys from Arab communities in southern and eastern Chad to large cities in southern Libya. The recruits are then enlisted as mercenaries in the wars in Libya or Yemen.

    Human smuggling in Chad has increased over the past few years, especially with respect to movement from the country’s border with Sudan to Libya. Typically it is Cameroonian and Nigerian migrants already living and working in Chad who travel to Libya through Chad. While the occurrence of smuggling of people from West Africa looking to travel to Europe has remained low, the extent of irregular migration from Chad’s southern regions to Libya and the goldfields in the north has continued to increase. The north-western region of the Tibesti, where the country’s two largest goldfields are located, is one of the country’s main human smuggling hubs. Although many of the migrants are Chadian and would technically be authorized to travel within their country, they often solicit the services of human smugglers because northbound migration for the purposes of gold mining has been criminalized. Overall, restrictions on movement introduced by the government amid the COVID-19 pandemic had little impact on the human smuggling industry in Chad throughout 2020. Darfuri asylum seekers and refugees in eastern Chad also often solicit the services of migrant smugglers. Smugglers tend to come from Saharan ethnic groups and cross-border nomadic groups. Smuggled individuals regularly experience abuse at the hands of their smugglers and death from the perils of the journey.

    Trade

    The challenges presented by arms ownership and smuggling remain acute in Chad. In particular, Chad’s borders are considered porous and are ideal for the illegal exchange of arms. There are several different corridors used for trafficking arms, involving the vast majority of neighbouring countries, including Niger, Sudan and Libya, as well as Nigeria and the Central African Republic. The proliferation of armed groups at most of the country’s borders has amplified the demand for arms. Chad has been affected by the overflow of conflicts from Libya (which began in 2011), the conflict in the neighbouring Darfur region in Sudan since 2003, which leaked across the border into Chad, and the conflict in the Lake Chad region since 2009, with the Boko Haram insurgency. It is worth noting that the government’s request for citizens in eastern Chad to hand in personal weapons may have increased arms smuggling activity by activating the demand for weapons to replace those that were confiscated.

    Environment

    The illicit flora trade is limited compared to other countries in the region, but Chad imports illicit timber from neighbouring Cameroon. In regard to fauna crimes, Chad remains threatened by large-scale poaching activities of large mammals due to high international demand for ivory and other trophies from protected species. Poachers include heavily armed local groups of both domestic and Sudanese or Cameroonian origin. Today, while elephants still present an attractive poachable resource, the presence of rangers has brought about decreased poaching in the area. There is also a widespread practice in northern Chad of capturing falcons and selling them to Middle Eastern buyers.

    By far the largest environmental crime market in Chad is non-renewable resource crimes. Illegal gold mining in Chad is widespread and is linked to insecurity and violence. Various individuals are involved, including local miners, organized criminal networks and entrepreneurs, state-embedded actors, and foreign criminal actors, and the livelihoods of large sections of society depend on the industry. Furthermore, the goldfields in northern Chad are major hubs for human smuggling, as well as for human trafficking, as migrants travelling through them are often exploited, either physically or through debt-bondage. Although far less prevalent than gold mining, a limited amount of contraband oil is also present in Chad.

    Drugs

    Chad is a transit country for heroin, to a limited extent, but the overall level of heroin trafficking is considered minimal. Some links exist between domestic and regional terrorist organizations and illicit drug trafficking, including heroin, through the Sahel routes of Northern Africa, with destinations in European and North American markets. Similarly, Chad is a transit country for cocaine. While cocaine trafficking is low, it remains more prevalent than heroin. The cannabis trade is present along most of the southern borders in Chad. Cannabis has been produced along the borders with Nigeria, Cameroon, the Central African Republic and Sudan, and has also been trafficked into Chad from these countries. Cannabis trafficking mostly comes from Nigeria, and there has been some cannabis production in southern Chad, as well as in the Lake Chad region. There has been a slight decline in trafficking due to conflict in the central Sahel. Finally, in terms of synthetic drugs, domestic consumption of Tramadol is a growing problem in Chad. Although more than half of the country’s pharmacies have been shut down in recent years, with some having been involved in the clandestine sale of Tramadol, evidence suggests that the shutdown has had limited success in slowing down the consumption of the drug. Artisanal miners in the informal gold mining sector also use the drug as a way to increase productivity and suppress hunger.

    Criminal Actors

    Several armed groups and rebels operate in the north and east of Chad. These groups are involved in various types of trafficking activities, including drug trafficking and gold smuggling. There is a proliferation of unorganized and informal traffickers, bandits, criminals, robbers and road gangs in the country’s far north and east. Corruption is omnipresent in the Chadian administration. Customs and police services have been singled out for protecting traffickers. There are also reports of wildlife officers being involved in the illicit ivory trade. There was also a recent case of state-embedded actors being involved in drug trafficking. As for foreign actors, Chad is at the epicentre of cross-border crime in the region. Incursions of Sudanese groups and nationals from the Central African Republic are common. There are also small autonomous foreign militias in the country, which are known to be involved in wildlife poaching, human trafficking, arms trafficking, mineral trafficking, raiding and kidnapping. It is also possible that armed groups in the far north that are opposed to the N’Djamena regime recruit Sudanese and Libyan mercenaries.

    Leadership and governance

    Although the regulatory and institutional framework to address organized-crime prevalence in Chad has been weak, the government has taken significant steps to tackle criminality, albeit through a solely securitized approach. The military has also been engaged in regular crackdowns on illicit gold mining sites in the north of the country. The goals behind tackling criminal activities were not necessarily to tackle crime in itself, but were more often linked to strategic goals relating to combating armed politico-military opposition or securing access to artisanal gold mining areas to begin government-led industrial extraction. Overall, government transparency in Chad is limited and the country has one of the highest levels of corruption perception in the world. Oversight mechanisms in the country have been quasi non-existent. However, officers from the military and other security agencies have been tried, imprisoned and fined for their involvement in drug-trafficking activities.

    On the international level, Chad has given clear indications of promoting international cooperation in combating organized crime. The country has also had extensive relationships with a wide array of international organizations in the fight against transnational organized crime and terrorism in the Sahel, and they have made important efforts to counter Boko Haram in Cameroon and Nigeria. The EU, France and the US have seen Chad as an essential partner in the fight against terrorism and organized crime in the wider region. The country has also ratified several international treaties related to organized crime. On the domestic level, while Chad does have some legal frameworks to counter organized crime, implementation remains a challenge. Moreover, in some areas of the country religious traditions and practices provide legitimacy to certain crime markets, namely human trafficking, with young women often being victims of modern slavery.

    Criminal justice and security

    Vast areas along the border with Sudan are partially or totally beyond the control of the country’s central government. Law enforcement in Chad has been limited to major cities and has remained geographically and functionally limited. Additionally, law enforcement is often in conflict in areas where traditional religious laws are customary. Despite this, special task forces with specific geographical or thematic focuses have been created, and these have experienced some successes in addressing criminality. With regard to the judicial system, there are no specialized judicial units in Chad with the specific aim of countering organized crime. The presence of the state and the judiciary in certain areas of the country where armed rebellions occur is extremely weak.

    Economic and financial environment

    Chad’s economic regulatory capacity remains weak. There has been no significant progress in the correlation between economic regulation and the fight against organized crime, as security remains a major priority for the state. Doing business within Chad is extremely difficult due to its weak economic regulatory capacity. In 2018, Chad’s national assembly passed a law against money laundering and terrorist financing, which provides provisional and repressive measures. The law also covers international cooperation, including mutual legal assistance between competent services of the various states and the extradition of people. Nevertheless, the effectiveness of the country’s anti-money laundering framework, more specifically its enforcement, remains extremely weak.

    Civil society and social protection

    Victim and witness support in Chad remains limited and focused in key geographic areas. The government has worked with international organizations to support victims of human trafficking. The country has also seen the mobilization of a small group of civil society organizations to denounce trafficking in people. Similarly, prevention measures against organized crime are very weak in Chad, but there has been some mobilization by civil-society actors to carry out such efforts in certain parts of the country. In regard to the media, journalists are often arrested or attacked for negative reporting about the government. Media outlets have been shut down due to criticism in their coverage, and authorities have blocked social media access during protests.

    Analyses

    Déby’s death accelerates illicit arms flows across Central Africa

    The former Chadian president’s demise has sparked fears of more instability, and more illegal weapons, in the area.

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    The criminal markets score is represented by the pyramid base size and the criminal actors score is represented by the pyramid height, on a scale ranging from 1 to 10. The resilience score is represented by the panel height, which can be identified by the side of the panel.