Definition of Youth

The scarce documents on youth in the Central African Republic do not specify an age range for youth.


Marriageable Age

  • Opposite Sex
  • Same Sex
  • Without parental consent
  • with parental consent
  • Male
  • 22
  • --
  • --
  • Female
  • 18
  • --
  • --

  • No data for marriageable age with parental consent. No specific legislation for same-sex marriage. Source: UNSD, ILGA

Candidacy Age

Criminal Responsibility

Minimum Age
For under-aged offenders between 13 and 16 special rules apply. Source:  UN Child Rights Periodic Report

Majority Age


Voting Age


Situation of Young People

Literacy Rates

Both sexes (15-24) %
  • 48.86% Male (15-24) %
  • 26.97% Female (15-24) %

Net Enrolment Rate

Secondary School
Both sexes %
  • 18.36%Male %
  • 9.57% Female %

Situation of Young People

Prevalence of HIV

Male (15-24) %
Female (15-24) %

Tobacco Use

Consumed any smokeless or smoking tobacco product at least once 30 days prior to the survey.
Both sexes (13-15) %
  • 29.50% Male (13-15) %
  • 34.50% Female (13-15) %
  • Year: 2010
  • Source: WHO

Policy & Legislation

Is there a national youth policy?
A national youth policy has been prepared, but is currently not available online.

According to the Central African Republic: Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (2009), a National Policy for the Advancement of Central African Youth, has been prepared.   The aims of the youth policy are:  

  1. Citizenship education program for young people;
  2. Literacy program and support for social and educational facilities for young people.
According to a Facebook note by the National Youth Council, the National Policy for the Advancement of Central African Youth has strategic objectives to support the socio-economic integration of young people through training, mentoring, education and youth development as an area of strategic intervention. It is part of the Youth Guidance Programme. International documents that could provide further guidance are the African Youth Charter (2006) and African Youth Decade 2009-2018 Plan of Action (2011).

Public Institutions

Is there a governmental authority
(ministry, department or office) that is primarily responsible for youth?
The previous government (2008-2013) of the Central African Republic had a Ministry of Youth and Sports, which also participated in Pan-African Meetings of Youth Ministers. However, according to the Central African Republic: Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (2009) activities in the field of youth are underfunded. The earlier government was replaced by a coup d’état in March 2013. In January 2014, following a UN backed military intervention, the rebel leader, who had declared himself president, resigned. Since, January 2014 the Central African Republic has new interim government, which – according to Jeune Afrique – includes a Ministry of Youth, Sports, Arts and Culture.

Youth and Representation

Does the country have a national youth organisation / association (council, platform, body)?
The National Youth Council of the Central African Republic aims to promote the growth and development of youth, to mobilize and coordinate the actions of young people and to defend their interests at national and international level.    It aims to “promote a national youth policy”, involve youth in decision-making, provide training on “social values and culture of peace” as well as promote “participatory democracy.”   It is a member of the Pan-African Union of Youth and the Youth Association of the Economic Community of Central African States (AJEC).

Budget & Spending

What is the budget allocated to the governmental authority (ministry, department or office) that is primarily responsible for youth and/or youth programming?
No documentation could be found on youth spending in Central African Republic. According to the World Bank, the Central African Republic spent 12.04% of its government expenditure on education provision in 2010, and 1.25 % of its GDP in 2011.
Total Expenditure on Education as a Percentage of Government Spending and GDP

  • % of GDP
  • % of gov. expenditure

Source: World Bank
Gaps indicate missing data from the original data source. (Accessed August 2013).

Additional Background

From the Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers (2009):

Under the youth guidance program (Programme d’Encadrement des Jeunes) a National Policy for the Advancement of Central African Youth has been prepared. Another aspect is to strengthen the institutional capacities of youth organizations as partners in social-educational and socioeconomic activities for young people.

To expand HIV/AIDS work among young people, an exhaustive inventory of youth associations, particularly those involved in combating STI and HIV/AIDS, was conducted, and 54 NGOs working in Bangui were identified.

From the African Economic Outlook for the Central African Republic (2013):

The Central African Republic remains confronted by the consequences of the multiple political crises that rocked the country over more than a decade. … Malnutrition is still endemic throughout the country and is particularly rife in the mining towns of the South-West … Furthermore, armed conflict and insecurity, with 250 000 displaced persons in the north- west regions, have increased food insecurity.

Because it is unlikely to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by 2015, the Central African Republic made a commitment to implement the MDG Acceleration Framework, as certain other sub-Saharan African countries have. … One of the priorities of the Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (PRSP 2) for 2011‐15 is education. Public expenditure on education increased from less than 10% in 2007 to almost 40% by 2011. The mid-term review of the MDGs at the end of 2010 showed that the primary-school enrolment rate had improved drastically. The preschool enrolment rate improved from 5% in 2005 to more than 8% in 2011, with nine girls for every ten boys. The gross enrolment rate also improved from 74% in 2007 to 91% between 2010 and 2011.
The SNSE education strategy (Stratégie nationale du secteur de l’éducation) was developed and implemented in 2009 with the aim of building and developing the country’s human resources. The government committed to progressively allocating significant shares of the operating budget, with the figure reaching 23% by 2020.

The Central African Republic has also legislated against child labour and in favour of the employment of people with disabilities, but the laws are rarely enforced.

Gender disparities remain high. The country was ranked 142nd out of 148 countries in the 2013 UNDP Gender Inequality Index. As is shown in the AfDB’s 2010 report on the Central African Republic’s gender profile, there are still few women involved in managing and controlling economic resources. Only one in nine MPs and one in eight members of the executive are female.