Sudan facts on every entity in the world

Military regimes favoring Islamic-oriented governments have dominated national politics since independence from Anglo-Egyptian co-rule in 1956. Sudan was embroiled in two prolonged civil wars during most of the remainder of the 20th century. These conflicts were rooted in northern economic, political, and social domination of largely non-Muslim, non-Arab southern Sudanese. The first civil war ended in 1972 but another broke out in 1983. Peace talks gained momentum in 2002-04 with the signing of several accords. The final North/South Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA), signed in January 2005, granted the southern rebels autonomy for six years followed by a referendum on independence for Southern Sudan. The referendum was held in January 2011 and indicated overwhelming support for independence. South Sudan became independent on 9 July 2011. Sudan and South Sudan have yet to fully implement security and economic agreements signed in September 2012 relating to the normalization of relations between the two countries. The final disposition of the contested Abyei region has also to be decided.

Since South Sudan's independence, conflict has broken out between the government and the Sudan People's Liberation Movement-North in Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile states, which has resulted in 1.2 million internally displaced persons or severely affected persons needing humanitarian assistance. A separate conflict, which broke out in the western region of Darfur in 2003, displaced nearly two million people and caused an estimated 200,000 to 400,000 deaths. Violence in Darfur in 2013 resulted in an additional estimated 6,000 civilians killed and 500,000 displaced. The UN and the African Union have jointly commanded a Darfur peacekeeping operation known as the African Union-United Nations Hybrid Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) since 2007. Peacekeeping troops have struggled to stabilize the situation and have increasingly become targets for attacks by armed groups. Sudan also has faced refugee influxes from neighboring countries, primarily Ethiopia, Eritrea, Chad, Central African Republic, and South Sudan. Armed conflict, poor transport infrastructure, and government denial of access have impeded the provision of humanitarian assistance to affected populations.



north-eastern Africa, bordering the Red Sea, between Egypt and Eritrea

Geographic coordinates

15.00° N, 30.00° E

Area 16/257

total: 1,861,484 sq km

land: NA

water: NA

Area - comparative

slightly less than one-fifth the size of the US

Land boundaries

total: 6,819 km

border countries (7): Central African Republic 174 km, Chad 1,403 km, Egypt 1,276 km, Eritrea 682 km, Ethiopia 744 km, Libya 382 km, South Sudan 2,158 km

note: Sudan-South Sudan boundary represents 1 January 1956 alignment; final alignment pending negotiations and demarcation; final sovereignty status of Abyei region pending negotiations between Sudan and South Sudan


853 km

Maritime claims

territorial sea: 12 nm

contiguous zone: 18 nm

continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation


hot and dry; arid desert; rainy season varies by region (April to November)


generally flat, featureless plain; desert dominates the north


mean elevation:

elevation extremes:

lowest point: Red Sea 0 m

highest point: Jabal Marrah 3,071 m

Natural resources

petroleum; small reserves of iron ore, copper, chromium ore, zinc, tungsten, mica, silver, gold; hydropower

Land use

agricultural land: 100%

arable land 15.7%; permanent crops 0.2%; permanent pasture 84.2%

forest: 0%

other: 0% (2011 est.)

Irrigated land

18,900 sq km (2010)

Total renewable water resources

64.5 cu km (2011)

Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural)

total: 27.59 cu km/yr (4%/1%/95%)

per capita: 683.4 cu m/yr (2005)

Natural hazards

dust storms and periodic persistent droughts

Environment - current issues

inadequate supplies of potable water; wildlife populations threatened by excessive hunting; soil erosion; desertification; periodic drought

Environment - international agreements

party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Wetlands

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - note

dominated by the Nile and its tributaries

People and Society


noun: Sudanese (singular and plural)

adjective: Sudanese

Ethnic groups

Sudanese Arab (approximately 70%), Fur, Beja, Nuba, Fallata


Arabic (official), English (official), Nubian, Ta Bedawie, Fur

note: program of "Arabization" in process


Sunni Muslim, small Christian minority

Population 38/238

36,108,853 (July 2015 est.)

Age structure

0-14 years: 40.15% (male 7,359,547/female 7,138,348)

15-24 years: 20.5% (male 3,815,524/female 3,587,177)

25-54 years: 32.08% (male 5,620,201/female 5,964,277)

55-64 years: 4.02% (male 765,137/female 685,577)

65 years and over: 3.25% (male 638,495/female 534,570) (2015 est.)

Dependency ratios

total dependency ratio: 78%

youth dependency ratio: 72.1%

elderly dependency ratio: 5.9%

potential support ratio: 16.9% (2015 est.)

Median age

total: 19.3 years

male: 19.1 years

female: 19.6 years (2015 est.)

Population growth rate 68/233

1.72% (2015 est.)

Birth rate 43/224

29.19 births/1,000 population (2015 est.)

Death rate 109/225

7.66 deaths/1,000 population (2015 est.)

Net migration rate 190/222

-4.29 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2015 est.)


urban population: 33.8% of total population (2015)

rate of urbanization: 2.54% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)

Major urban areas - population

KHARTOUM (capital) 5.129 million (2015)

Sex ratio

at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female

0-14 years: 1.03 male(s)/female

15-24 years: 1.06 male(s)/female

25-54 years: 0.94 male(s)/female

55-64 years: 1.12 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 1.19 male(s)/female

total population: 1.02 male(s)/female (2015 est.)

Maternal mortality rate 9/184

311 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)

Infant mortality rate 35/224

total: 51.52 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 56.87 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 45.9 deaths/1,000 live births (2015 est.)

Life expectancy at birth 186/224

total population: 63.68 years

male: 61.61 years

female: 65.85 years (2015 est.)

Total fertility rate 41/224

3.79 children born/woman (2015 est.)

Contraceptive prevalence rate

9% (2010)

Health expenditures 75/191

6.5% of GDP (2013)

Physicians density

0.28 physicians/1,000 population (2008)

Hospital bed density

0.8 beds/1,000 population (2012)

Drinking water source


urban: 66% of population

rural: 50.2% of population

total: 55.5% of population


urban: 34% of population

rural: 49.8% of population

total: 44.5% of population (2012 est.)

Sanitation facility access


urban: 43.9% of population

rural: 13.4% of population

total: 23.6% of population


urban: 56.1% of population

rural: 86.6% of population

total: 76.4% of population (2012 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate

0.25% (2014 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS

53,200 (2014 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths

2,900 (2014 est.)

Obesity - adult prevalence rate 150/191

6.6% (2014)

Children under the age of 5 years underweight 21/138

27% (2006)

Education expenditures

2.2% of GDP (2009)

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)

total: 7 years

male: 7 years

female: 7 years (2012)

Unemployment, youth ages 15-24

total: 22.9%

male: 21.2%

female: 25.7% (2008 est.)


Country name

conventional long form: Republic of the Sudan

conventional short form: Sudan

local long form: Jumhuriyat as-Sudan

local short form: As-Sudan

former: Anglo-Egyptian Sudan

Government type

federal republic ruled by the National Congress Party (NCP), which seized power by military coup in 1989; the CPA-mandated Government of National Unity, which between 2005 and 2011 provided a percentage of leadership posts to the southern Sudan-based Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM), was disbanded following the secession of South Sudan


name: Khartoum

geographic coordinates: 15.36° N, 32.32° E

time difference: UTC+3 (8 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)

Administrative divisions

18 states (wilayat, singular - wilayah); Al Gazira, Al Gedaref, Blue Nile, Central Darfur, East Darfur, Kassala, Khartoum, North Darfur, North Kordofan, Northern, Red Sea, River Nile, Sennar, South Darfur, South Kordofan, West Darfur, Western Kordofan, White Nile


1 January 1956 (from Egypt and the UK)

National holiday

Independence Day, 1 January (1956)


previous 1998; latest adopted 6 July 2005, effective 9 July 2005 (interim constitution); amended 2015; note - in 2011, the Government of Sudan initiated a process for drafting a new constitution (2015)

Legal system

mixed legal system of Islamic law and English common law

International law organization participation

accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; withdrew acceptance of ICCt jurisdiction in 2008


citizenship by birth: no

citizenship by descent only: the father must be a citizen of Sudan

dual citizenship recognized: no

residency requirement for naturalization: 10 years


17 years of age; universal

Executive branch

chief of state: President Umar Hassan Ahmad al-BASHIR (since 16 October 1993); First Vice President BAKRI Hassan Salih, Second Vice President Hasabu Mohamed ABDEL RAHMIN (both since 3 December 2013); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government

head of government: President Umar Hassan Ahmad al-BASHIR (since 16 October 1993); First Vice President BAKRI Hassan Salih, Second Vice President Hasabu Mohamed ABDEL RAHMAN (both since 9 December 2013)

cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president; note - the NCP, formerly the National Islamic Front or NIF, dominates al-BASHIR's cabinet

elections/appointments: president directly elected by absolute majority popular vote in two rounds if needed; last held on 13-16 April 2015 (next to be held in 2020)

election results: Umar Hassan Ahmad al-BASHIR reelected president; percent of vote - Umar Hassan Ahmad al-BASHIR (NCP) 94.1%, other (15 candidates) 5.9%

Legislative branch

description: bicameral National Legislature consists of the Council of States or Majlis Weleyat (50 seats; members indirectly elected - 2 each by the 25 state legislatures to serve 6-year terms) and the National Assembly or Majlis Watani (426 seats; 213 members directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote, 128 for women only directly elected by proportional representation vote, and 85 directly elected by proportional representation vote; members serve 6-year terms)

elections: last held on 13-15 April 2015 (next to be held in 2021)

election results: National Assembly - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - NCP 323, DUP 25, Democratic Unionist Party 15, other 44, independent 19

note: the mandate of the members from the south was terminated upon independence by the Republic of South Sudan effective 9 July 2011 and membership in Sudan's National Assembly was reduced to 354; it is unclear whether this total will be retained for the next election or whether the previous total of 450 will be reconstituted

Judicial branch

highest court(s): National Supreme Court (consists of 70 judges organized into panels of 3 judges; court includes 4 circuits that operate outside the capital); Constitutional Court (consists of 9 justices including the court president); note - the Constitutional Court resides outside the national judiciary

judge selection and term of office: National Supreme Court and Constitutional Court judges appointed by the president of the republic upon the recommendation of the National Judicial Service Commission, an independent body chaired by the chief justice of the republic and members including other judges and judicial and legal officials; Supreme Court judge tenure NA; Constitutional Court judges appointed for 7 years

subordinate courts: National Court of Appeals; other national courts (not specified in the 2005 Interim National Constitution as to national or local authority); township and rural (peoples') courts

Political parties and leaders

Democratic Unionist Party or DUP [Jalal al-DIGAIR]

Democratic Unionist Party [Muhammad Uthman al-MIRGHANI]

Muslim Brotherhood or MB

National Congress Party or NCP [Umar Hassan al-BASHIR]

National Umma Party or UP [Siddiq al-MAHDI]

Popular Congress Party or PCP [Hassan al-TURABI]

Reform Now Party or RNP [Dr. Ghazi Salah al-DEEN]

Sudanese Communist Party or SCP [Mohammed Moktar Al-KHATEEB]

Sudanese Congress Party [Ibrahim Al-SHEIKH]

Unionist Movement Party or UMP [Nagla AL-AZHARI]

Political pressure groups and leaders

Darfur rebel groups including the Justice and Equality Movement or JEM [Gibril Fidail IBRAHIM], Sudan Liberation Movement or SLM-AW [Abdel Wahid NUR,various factional leaders], Sudan Liberation or SLM-MM [Minni Arkou MINAWI]

National Consensus Front or NCF [Farouq ABU ISSA]

Sudan People's Liberation Movement-North or SPLM-N [Malik AGAR]

Sudan Revolutionary Front or SRF [Malik AGAR]

International organization participation


Flag description

three equal horizontal bands of red (top), white, and black with a green isosceles triangle based on the hoist side; colors and design based on the Arab Revolt flag of World War I, but the meanings of the colors are expressed as follows: red signifies the struggle for freedom, white is the color of peace, light, and love, black represents Sudan itself (in Arabic 'Sudan' means black), green is the color of Islam, agriculture, and prosperity

National symbol(s)

secretary bird; national colors: red, white, black, green

National anthem

name: "Nahnu Djundulla Djundulwatan" (We Are the Army of God and of Our Land)

lyrics/music: Sayed Ahmad Muhammad SALIH/Ahmad MURJAN

note: adopted 1956; originally served as the anthem of the Sudanese military


Economy - overview

Sudan has experienced protracted social conflict, civil war, and, in July 2011, the loss of three-quarters of its oil production due to the secession of South Sudan. The oil sector had driven much of Sudan's GDP growth since 1999. For nearly a decade, the economy boomed on the back of rising oil production, high oil prices, and significant inflows of foreign direct investment. Since the economic shock of South Sudan's secession, Sudan has struggled to stabilize its economy and make up for the loss of foreign exchange earnings. The interruption of oil production in South Sudan in 2012 for over a year and the consequent loss of oil transit fees further exacerbated the fragile state of Sudan’s economy. Sudan is also subject to comprehensive US sanctions. Sudan is attempting to develop non-oil sources of revenues, such as gold mining, while carrying out an austerity program to reduce expenditures. The world’s largest exporter of gum Arabic, Sudan produces 75-80% of the world’s total output. Agriculture continues to employ 80% of the work force. Sudan introduced a new currency, still called the Sudanese pound, following South Sudan's secession, but the value of the currency has fallen since its introduction. Khartoum formally devalued the currency in June 2012, when it passed austerity measures that included gradually repealing fuel subsidies. Sudan also faces high inflation, which reached 47% on an annual basis in November 2012 but subsided to 18% in 2015. Ongoing conflicts in Southern Kordofan, Darfur, and the Blue Nile states, lack of basic infrastructure in large areas, and reliance by much of the population on subsistence agriculture keep close to half of the population at or below the poverty line.

GDP (purchasing power parity) 70/230

$167.4 billion (2015 est.)

$161.8 billion (2014 est.)

$156.2 billion (2013 est.)

note: data are in 2015 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate)

$84.33 billion (2015 est.)

GDP - real growth rate 80/225

3.5% (2015 est.)

3.6% (2014 est.)

3.9% (2013 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP) 173/230

$4,500 (2015 est.)

$4,300 (2014 est.)

$4,200 (2013 est.)

note: data are in 2015 US dollars

Gross national saving 140/179

11.6% of GDP (2015 est.)

9.6% of GDP (2014 est.)

11.1% of GDP (2013 est.)

GDP - composition, by end use

household consumption: 78.7%

government consumption: 6.7%

investment in fixed capital: 19%

investment in inventories: 1%

exports of goods and services: 7.6%

imports of goods and services: -13%

(2015 est.)

GDP - composition, by sector of origin

agriculture: 28.9%

industry: 20.4%

services: 50.7% (2015 est.)

Agriculture - products

cotton, groundnuts (peanuts), sorghum, millet, wheat, gum arabic, sugarcane, cassava (manioc, tapioca), mangoes, papaya, bananas, sweet potatoes, sesame seeds; sheep and other livestock


oil, cotton ginning, textiles, cement, edible oils, sugar, soap distilling, shoes, petroleum refining, pharmaceuticals, armaments, automobile/light truck assembly

Industrial production growth rate 94/202

2.7% (2015 est.)

Labor force 47/233

11.92 million (2007 est.)

Labor force - by occupation

agriculture: 80%

industry: 7%

services: 13% (1998 est.)

Unemployment rate 144/207

13.6% (2014 est.)

14.8% (2013 est.)

Population below poverty line

46.5% (2009 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share

lowest 10%: 2.7%

highest 10%: 26.7% (2009 est.)


revenues: $6.518 billion

expenditures: $9.754 billion (2015 est.)

Taxes and other revenues 213/219

7.7% of GDP (2015 est.)

Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-) 142/220

-3.8% of GDP (2015 est.)

Public debt 43/176

72.1% of GDP (2015 est.)

73.4% of GDP (2014 est.)

Fiscal year

calendar year

Inflation rate (consumer prices) 219/226

18.2% (2015 est.)

36.9% (2014 est.)

Stock of narrow money 86/192

$8.345 billion (31 December 2015 est.)

$8.024 billion (31 December 2014 est.)

Stock of broad money 97/193

$13.47 billion (31 December 2015 est.)

$13 billion (31 December 2014 est.)

Stock of domestic credit 92/191

$15.16 billion (31 December 2015 est.)

$14.83 billion (31 December 2014 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares

Current account balance 168/197

-$4.905 billion (2015 est.)

-$5.739 billion (2014 est.)

Exports 115/224

$4.392 billion (2015 est.)

$4.35 billion (2014 est.)

Exports - commodities

gold; oil and petroleum products; cotton, sesame, livestock, peanuts, gum arabic, sugar

Exports - partners

Macau 30.2%, UAE 30.2%, Saudi Arabia 14.6%, Egypt 4.9% (2014)

Imports 107/223

$8.287 billion (2015 est.)

$8.106 billion (2014 est.)

Imports - commodities

foodstuffs, manufactured goods, refinery and transport equipment, medicines, chemicals, textiles, wheat

Imports - partners

Macau 20.1%, UAE 10.2%, India 8%, Malaysia 7.4%, Egypt 5.3%, Saudi Arabia 4.5% (2014)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold 161/170

$172.4 million (31 December 2015 est.)

$181.5 million (31 December 2014 est.)

Debt - external 65/206

$48.17 billion (31 December 2014 est.)

$45.56 billion (31 December 2013 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - at home 120/120

$0 (31 December 2015 est.)

$22.69 billion (31 December 2014 est.)

Exchange rates

Sudanese pounds (SDG) per US dollar -

6.47 (2015 est.)

5.74 (2014 est.)

5.74 (2013 est.)

3.57 (2012 est.)

2.68 (2011 est.)


Electricity - production 108/220

7.193 billion kWh (2012 est.)

Electricity - consumption 111/219

5.665 billion kWh (2010 est.)

Electricity - exports 199/218

0 kWh (2013 est.)

Electricity - imports 205/219

0 kWh (2013 est.)

Electricity - installed generating capacity 105/214

2.083 million kW (2012 est.)

Electricity - from fossil fuels 180/214

30.7% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)

Electricity - from nuclear fuels 184/214

0% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)

Electricity - from hydroelectric plants 31/214

66.3% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)

Electricity - from other renewable sources 73/212

3% of total installed capacity (2012 est.)

Crude oil - production 53/214

64,770 bbl/day (2014 est.)

Crude oil - exports 71/214

5,355 bbl/day (2012 est.)

Crude oil - imports 128/214

0 bbl/day (2012 est.)

Crude oil - proved reserves 39/215

1.25 billion bbl (1 January 2015 est.)

Refined petroleum products - production 68/214

124,900 bbl/day (2010 est.)

Refined petroleum products - consumption 118/212

26,750 bbl/day (2013 est.)

Refined petroleum products - exports 109/214

1,496 bbl/day (2012 est.)

Refined petroleum products - imports 151/213

6,199 bbl/day (2012 est.)

Natural gas - production 131/216

0 cu m (2013 est.)

Natural gas - consumption 196/215

0 cu m (2013 est.)

Natural gas - exports 184/215

0 cu m (2013 est.)

Natural gas - imports 136/214

0 cu m (2013 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves 75/212

21.24 billion cu m (1 January 2013 est.)

Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy 87/212

16.45 million Mt (2011 est.)


Telephones - fixed lines 102/219

total subscriptions: 420,000

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 1 (2014 est.)

Telephones - mobile cellular 46/217

total: 27.8 million

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 78 (2014 est.)

Telephone system

general assessment: well-equipped system by regional standards and being upgraded; cellular communications started in 1996 and have expanded substantially with wide coverage of most major cities

domestic: consists of microwave radio relay, cable, fiber optic, radiotelephone communications, tropospheric scatter, and a domestic satellite system with 14 earth stations

international: country code - 249; linked to the EASSy and FLAG fiber-optic submarine cable systems; satellite earth stations - 1 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean), 1 Arabsat (2010)

Broadcast media

the Sudanese Government directly controls TV and radio, requiring that both media reflect government policies; TV has a permanent military censor; a private radio station is in operation (2007)

Radio broadcast stations

AM 12, FM 1, shortwave 1 (1998)

Television broadcast stations

3 (1997)

Internet country code


Internet hosts 210/232

99 (2012)

Internet users 48/217

total: 8.5 million

percent of population: 24.0% (2014 est.)


Airports 71/236

74 (2013)

Airports - with paved runways

total: 16

over 3,047 m: 2

2,438 to 3,047 m: 10

1,524 to 2,437 m: 2

under 914 m: 2 (2013)

Airports - with unpaved runways

total: 58

2,438 to 3,047 m: 1

1,524 to 2,437 m: 17

914 to 1,523 m: 28

under 914 m: 12 (2013)


6 (2013)


gas 156 km; oil 4,070 km; refined products 1,613 km (2013)

Railways 30/136

total: 7,251 km

narrow gauge: 5,851 km 1.067-m gauge; 1,400 km 0.600-m gauge for cotton plantations (20014)

Roadways 128/223

total: 11,900 km

paved: 4,320 km

unpaved: 7,580 km (2000)

Waterways 24/107

4,068 km (1,723 km open year round on White and Blue Nile Rivers) (2011)

Merchant marine 143/156

total: 2

by type: cargo 2 (2010)

Ports and terminals

major seaport(s): Port Sudan

Military and Security

Military branches

Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF): Land Forces, Navy (includes Marines), Sudanese Air Force (Sikakh al-Jawwiya as-Sudaniya), Popular Defense Forces (2011)

Military service age and obligation

18-33 years of age for male and female compulsory or voluntary military service; 1-2 year service obligation; a requirement that completion of national service was mandatory before entering public or private sector employment has been cancelled (2012)

Transnational Issues

Disputes - international

the effects of Sudan's almost constant ethnic and rebel militia fighting since the mid-20th century have penetrated all of the neighboring states; Chad wishes to be a helpful mediator in resolving the Darfur conflict, and in 2010 established a joint border monitoring force with Sudan, which has helped to reduce cross-border banditry and violence; as of mid-2013, Chad, Egypt, Ethiopia, Israel, the Central African Republic, and South Sudan provided shelter for more than 600,000 Sudanese refugees; during the same period, Sudan, in turn, hosted about 115,000 Eritreans, 32,000 Chadians, and smaller numbers of Ethiopians and Central Africans; Sudan accuses Eritrea of supporting Sudanese rebel groups; efforts to demarcate the porous boundary with Ethiopia proceed slowly due to civil and ethnic fighting in eastern Sudan; Sudan claims but Egypt de facto administers security and economic development of the Halaib region north of the 22nd parallel boundary; periodic violent skirmishes with Sudanese residents over water and grazing rights persist among related pastoral populations along the border with the Central African Republic; South Sudan-Sudan boundary represents 1 January 1956 alignment, final alignment pending negotiations and demarcation; final sovereignty status of Abyei Area pending negotiations between South Sudan and Sudan

Refugees and internally displaced persons

refugees (country of origin): 109,196 (Eritrea); 42,334 (Chad); 5,495 (Ethiopia) (2014); 5,540 (Yemen) (2015); 199,608 (South Sudan) (2016)

IDPs: 3.1 million (civil war 1983-2005; ongoing conflict in Darfur region; government and rebel fighting along South Sudan border; inter-tribal clashes) (2015)