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Study: 88.6 per cent of tea sellers in Sudan’s capital are displaced or migrants

November 2 - 2016 KHARTOUM
File photo: A teas seller in Khartoum
File photo: A teas seller in Khartoum

An economic study on the informal sector focused on women tea sellers in Khartoum has revealed that 87 per cent of them are in the age group from 18-45, 45.1 per cent of them unmarried, 33 per cent of them married and 21 per cent of them widowed or divorced.

The study, conducted by economic expert Dr Hassan Abdelati, has found that 88.6 per cent of the tea sellers in Khartoum are either displaced or migrants from rural areas.

In the study, Dr Abdelati asserts that the tea sellers’ sector is growing because of inflation, war, difficult economic conditions, illiteracy, and poor education standards among the women.

He has determined that the expansion of the informal sector in general is due to the dismissal of more than 30,000 employees, spending reduction, and expansion of the war.

Dr Abdelati’s study says that this is exacerbated by the State’s reliance on taxes and fees, turning the economy after the discovery of oil from a productive economy to an economy relying on petroleum by 90 per cent.


The many of the women who eke-out a living on the streets of Khartoum and surrounding areas selling tea in the doorways of shops, behind buildings and under trees, are often subject to harassment and seizure of their equipment. Last month, Khartoum locality banned tea vendors from working at El Saha El Khadra and on Nile Avenue for three weeks.

Last August, a security campaign against tea sellers resulted in a number of them being harassed to pay fees, and their equipment confiscated.

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