Sudan - Country Commercial Guide
Market Entry Strategy
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U.S. companies have a presence in the Sudanese market.  American brands and technology are much sought after. Successful U.S. companies generally work through a trusted Sudanese national who is either an agent or a formal company employee, or U.S. investors partner with one of the larger private sector consortiums.  A key to success in Sudan is to have a reliable, in-country partner/agent who understands the regulatory regime and can gain access to important decision makers.  In person visits to Sudan are helpful in providing a greater understanding of the country’s infrastructure, distribution channels, marketing environment, and to gain personal insight through direct engagement with local business operators into the opportunities and challenges presented by this market.

Sudan is positioned as a major conduit for trade between central Africa and markets in the Persian Gulf, Egypt, and other parts of the Middle East. African agricultural and mineral products from Ethiopia, South Sudan, Chad, and the Central African Republic funnel through Sudan for export through Port Sudan or overland to Egypt.  However, Sudan’s distribution network requires significant investment.  A colonial-era railway connects many distant regions in Sudan, but its aging rolling stock is subject to regular breakdowns.  The road network is sufficient for truck traffic.  Port Sudan, the country’s primary seaport, lacks modern equipment and is often beset with labor disputes.  In September 2021, local tribal leadership blocked road access between Port Sudan and the interior for ten weeks, leading to significant demurrage charges for those companies seeking the move cargo through the port.  This “inland blockade” convinced most major international shipping lines to abandon service to Port Sudan, forcing many exporters to scramble to find alternate, more costly transportation options.