How to Hire Employees in South Sudan

Shraddha Saxena
Discover the benefits of hiring in South Sudan, where strategic geographic positioning and a dynamic business climate create ample opportunities. Boasting a competent workforce and flourishing sectors like mining, agriculture, and technology, South Sudan provides access to varied talent pools and substantial growth prospects in Africa’s vibrant economic landscape.

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Navigating the hiring landscape in South Sudan presents a distinct opportunity amid its challenges. The country, primarily dependent on agriculture, is transitioning towards broader economic development despite a high unemployment rate of 12.01%. This shift creates fertile ground for organizations to tap into an eager workforce ready to be part of the nation’s growth. 

Understanding local economic nuances and investing in community-centric employment strategies can yield substantial long-term benefits for businesses looking to establish a presence. Strategically engaging with South Sudan’s labour market means contributing to its development while harnessing the untapped potential in a transitioning economy.

What you need to know before hiring employees in South Sudan 

Job market in South Sudan

  • South Sudan's economy, predominantly reliant on oil, which constitutes 40-80% of GDP, presents unique investment opportunities, especially in diversifying industries. Despite oil's dominance, agriculture remains a significant sector, involving an estimated 80% of the population in subsistence farming and livestock rearing.
  • Though in nascent stages, the industrial and services sectors are gradually expanding. This evolution offers fertile ground for developing businesses in areas beyond the traditional oil and agricultural domains, potentially stimulating job creation in manufacturing and service-oriented industries.
  • Job opportunities differ markedly between rural and urban settings. While rural areas focus on agriculture, urban centers offer more varied opportunities in small businesses and service industries, accommodating different professional skills and entrepreneurial initiatives.
  • Backed by South Sudan's Vision 2040 and the Revised National Development Strategy (2021-2024), the country is laying down frameworks for improved governance, economic diversification, and infrastructure development, all of which are poised to reshape the employment landscape favorably.
  • Initiatives aiming to integrate gender considerations and youth empowerment into national policies underscore a commitment to inclusive growth. This focus is expected to nurture a more diverse workforce, driving innovation and participation across all sectors of the economy.

South Sudan  Hiring Trends

  • Despite being heavily reliant on oil, which constitutes up to 80% of GDP, South Sudan is seeing incremental growth in its GDP, projected to increase by 49.08% by 2029. This economic expansion is expected to gradually open up new sectors for employment beyond the traditional oil and agriculture industries.
  • With an internet penetration rate of 12.1% as of early 2024, there is growing digital access that could spur innovations and new business ventures, particularly in e-commerce and digital services, which are less developed sectors with potential for job creation.
  • As inflation is forecast to decrease significantly by 2029, economic conditions in South Sudan are expected to stabilize, making it a more attractive environment for new investments and workforce expansion in various sectors including retail and services.
  • The strategic focus on enhancing exports of crude oil and gold provides a stable foundation for economic stability and job opportunities in these sectors. This focus also encourages related industries like logistics, refining, and marketing to scale operations and increase employment.
  • While the retail sector has seen declines, there is potential for revitalization as the economy stabilizes and consumer spending power increases, leading to a gradual shift in job opportunities from primary agriculture to more diverse service-oriented roles.

How to hire employees from South Sudan

Set up an entity in the country

In South Sudan, foreign investors can establish a legal entity by registering a Limited Liability Company (LLC), which is the most common form. This offers liability protection to shareholders and requires registration with the Ministry of Justice and the South Sudan Investment Authority. Companies must also register for taxation with the South Sudan Revenue Authority and ensure compliance with local labor laws and operational regulations. This process involves navigating the country's evolving legal framework and ensuring adherence to the South Sudanese corporate governance standards.

Hire independent contractors

Hiring independent contractors in South Sudan involves carefully drafted agreements that specify the terms of engagement to clarify the independent nature of the relationship. This is crucial to avoid misclassification, which could lead to legal disputes and financial penalties under South Sudanese law. Utilizing independent contractors allows businesses to flexibly manage workloads and respond to changing economic conditions, but requires diligent management to maintain compliance with local labor regulations, especially those differentiating between employees and contractors.

Partner with an EOR in the country

Engaging with an Employer of Record (EOR) in South Sudan can greatly simplify the complexities associated with entering the local market. An EOR can manage all employment-related legal responsibilities, including compliance with labor laws, taxation, and payroll. This is particularly beneficial for companies aiming to establish a foothold without setting up a permanent entity. An EOR partnership ensures that operational practices comply with local regulations and can help mitigate risks associated with non-compliance, thereby streamlining business operations and facilitating market entry.

Employment Laws You Must Know Before Hiring in South Sudan 

Compliance risk while hiring in South Sudan  

In South Sudan, hiring compliance risks include misclassifying workers, not adhering to local labor laws, and failing to manage payroll and tax regulations correctly. Ensuring proper work permits and understanding local employment rights are also critical to mitigate legal issues.

Key Aspects of South Sudan Labor Law:

Employment Contract: In South Sudan, an employment contract is essential for defining the professional relationship between employers and employees. These contracts can be verbal or written, but written agreements are preferable for clarity and enforceability. 

Key elements should include:

  • the names and contact information of the parties involved, 
  • job description, 
  • workplace location, 
  • contract duration, 
  • and salary details including payroll calculations. 

It's also important to specify any benefits, the probation period, and conditions for termination. Employers must ensure the inclusion of tax and pension information to comply with local laws. Thoroughly discussing and agreeing on these terms with employees before signing is crucial for a transparent and trusted employment relationship.

Working Hours: In South Sudan, the standard workweek is typically capped at 48 hours, aligning with common international labor standards.

Overtime: Employers must pay overtime at 150% of the regular wage rate for extra hours worked on normal days. When employees work overtime on designated weekly holidays, the compensation increases to double the regular rate, or 200% of the normal wage rate.

Minimum Wage: The minimum wage in Sudan is set at 425 Sudanese pounds monthly for all workers, representing the legal minimum compensation for employment. This wage rate has been unchanged since January 1, 2008, and applies nationwide to ensure a uniform standard of pay.

Payroll laws 

In the South Sudan, salaries are typically dispersed on a monthly basis, with payments being issued on the last working day of the month.

Employment benefits in South Sudan 

Leave Policies in South Sudan 

Paid Time Off

In South Sudan, employees earn paid annual leave, increasing with years of service: 21 days for 1-3 years, 25 days for 3-15 years, and 30 days after 15 years. Unused leave accrues, with half pay receivable after two years or full compensation upon termination for any unused days.

Public Holidays

South Sudan observes 20 public holidays each year.

Sick Days

An employee with a year of continuous service is entitled to 12 days of sick leave annually, during which they receive full pay.

Maternity Leave

Pregnant employees are entitled to 90 days of fully paid maternity leave, with a 14-day prior notice required. Post-birth, they can take 45 half-days for breastfeeding. Six weeks' leave is provided for miscarriages. Fathers receive two weeks off following childbirth or a miscarriage.

Paternity Leave

An employee is entitled to two weeks of fully paid paternity leave, which must commence within three days of his child's birth or immediately after his wife's miscarriage.

Public Health Insurance 

South Sudan, the world's newest nation since 2011, faces profound challenges in establishing a robust public health insurance system. The healthcare infrastructure is underdeveloped, severely impacting access to comprehensive health services. The lack of a trained public health workforce and essential facilities further complicates the delivery of healthcare. Initiatives led by entities like the U.S. CDC, leveraging resources from programs like PEPFAR, aim to build capacity and enhance the healthcare system's responsiveness to public health emergencies. Despite these efforts, the need for humanitarian assistance remains critical, with millions affected by ongoing conflict and infrastructure deficiencies.

Filing tax in South Sudan 

Income Tax

In South Sudan, residents are taxed on global income, while non-residents are taxed only on local income. Taxable income includes employment earnings, entrepreneurial profits, rental revenues, and investment returns. Personal income tax rates are progressive, ranging from 0% to 15%, based on income levels. Additionally, employers must contribute 6% of the basic monthly salary towards social security, up to a cap. For a detailed breakdown of South Sudan's tax structure, including specific rates and brackets, visit our comprehensive guide.

Other Tax and Social Security Contributions:

In South Sudan, employers are obligated to contribute to social security by paying 6% of an employee's monthly basic salary. This contribution is capped, ensuring that social security payments are both mandatory and regulated. These contributions are vital for funding public social security benefits, providing financial protection for employees in cases of retirement, disability, or other needs. For a detailed breakdown of South Sudan's tax structure, including specific rates and brackets, visit our comprehensive guide.

Business culture in South Sudan 

Business culture in the South Sudan is characterized by a blend of traditional values and modern practices, reflecting its status as a global business hub. Here are five key aspects:

  • Business culture in South Sudan places a high value on personal relationships and trust. Establishing strong, respectful relationships is crucial before proceeding with business transactions.
  • Businesses often engage with the local community as a sign of goodwill and to better integrate into the local market. Community support is seen as essential for long-term success.
  • Despite the challenges in infrastructure, South Sudanese business environments lean towards formal business practices. Dressing formally for meetings and punctuality is respected in the professional setting.
  • Negotiations may take time as they often involve thorough discussions and can be indirect. Patience and flexibility in negotiations are valued traits that can lead to more favorable business agreements.
  • The business hierarchy in South Sudan is typically pronounced, with decisions generally made at the top of the company structure. It’s important to recognize and respect this hierarchy during interactions and negotiations.

Top sectors to hire from in South Sudan

Crude Oil

As the backbone of South Sudan’s economy, the crude oil sector offers extensive opportunities for growth and employment. Investment in this sector not only promises high returns but also drives related industries, making it a pivotal area for hiring.

Agriculture and Rural Development

Representing a significant part of the economy, this sector holds potential for transformative growth. Initiatives to modernize farming techniques and develop rural areas offer numerous employment opportunities, enhancing food security and economic stability.


With a focus on improving public health infrastructure, this sector is ideal for those looking to make a meaningful impact. Opportunities abound for professionals in healthcare services, administration, and public health management.


Investing in education is critical for national development. This sector seeks educators, administrators, and support staff to elevate educational standards and accessibility, offering a stable and rewarding career path.

Water and Sanitation

Essential for public health and well-being, this sector focuses on improving water quality and accessibility. Careers in this field are not only vital but also contribute directly to enhancing living condition

Top cities to hire from South Sudan 


As the capital and largest city, Juba is the administrative and commercial heart of South Sudan. It hosts a significant number of international organizations, NGOs, and businesses, making it a prime location for talent in sectors like administration, finance, and international relations.


Known for its agricultural and trade activities, Malakal is a vital city for hiring in the agriculture sector. Its proximity to fertile lands and the White Nile makes it a strategic location for agribusiness ventures.


As one of the largest cities in South Sudan, Wau is an important economic center, particularly for commerce and agriculture. The presence of several educational institutions also makes it a good source of fresh graduates and young professionals.

Hire in South Sudan compliantly with Gloroots

Gloroots, serving as an Employer of Record (EOR) in South Sudan, provides a tailored solution to navigate the complexities of local hiring. Our platform facilitates swift and compliant candidate onboarding, enabling businesses from startups to multinational corporations to seamlessly establish operations. Gloroots handles payroll, benefits administration, and ensures adherence to tax regulations, eliminating the need for a direct local corporate presence. This service allows companies to focus on strategically expanding their remote teams in South Sudan. For more information on how Gloroots can assist with your hiring needs in South Sudan, please reach out to us.

Frequently Asked Questions 

What are the primary industries for employment opportunities in South Sudan?

South Sudan's economy primarily revolves around the crude oil, agriculture, health, education, and water and sanitation sectors. These industries offer varied employment opportunities, ranging from technical roles in oil production to educational and healthcare services.

What legal considerations should businesses be aware of when hiring in South Sudan?

Businesses must comply with South Sudanese labor laws, which include regulations on employment contracts, minimum wage, working hours, and termination policies. It's also important to understand the tax implications and social security contributions required for both local and foreign workers.

How can foreign companies establish a presence in South Sudan?

Foreign companies can enter the South Sudanese market by setting up a local entity, such as a limited liability company, or partnering with an Employer of Record (EOR) like Gloroots to manage employment and payroll without establishing a direct legal presence. This approach simplifies compliance with local laws and streamlines operations.

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