Country Information

The Republic of Côte d’Ivoire, in the southwestern region of Africa has one of the largest Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth rate in Africa. It is also the largest economy in the West African Economic and Monetary Union. While French is the official language, there are 78 identified languages spoken throughout the country. Its capital and seat of the government is Yamoussoukro, but its economic capital is the port city of Abidjan.

Employment Contracts

Employment contracts can be permanent or for a fixed-term period. A probationary period is allowed and should be in writing, as well as fixed-term contracts. Contracts must be written in French and contain the following stipulations, among others determined by the law or the parties:

  • Date of the contract commencing
  • Location of work
  • Name and address of the employer
  • Name, gender, date and place of birth, address and nationality of the employee
  • Position and work to be performed
  • Duration of the contract
  • Salary and any bonuses
  • Applicable regulations or collective agreements
  • Any other details agreed between the parties

If the employer or employee cannot read or sign the contract, intent to enter into an employment agreement can be indicated by other means (e.g., verbally) but must be proved.

Working Hours

Working hours are limited to 40 hours per week for non-agricultural companies and 48 hours per week, and up to 2,400 hours a year for agricultural employees. Non-agricultural employees can work eight hours a day for five consecutive days, or six hours and 40 minutes per day for six days a week. Overtime is limited to 15 hours a week for both agricultural and non-agricultural workers without exceeding the daily limit of 3 hours per day. The overtime is paid between 15% and 100% of the employee’s salary.

Sick Leave

Employees receive five days of paid sick leave annually. Employees may also be eligible for benefits through the social security system in the amount of 100% of the last month’s earnings for up to six months. Benefits may be extended for a total of 12 months.

Maternity/Paternity Leave

Female employees receive 14 weeks of paid maternity leave with six weeks to be taken before the birth and eight weeks taken after the birth. Two additional weeks are provided for the multiple births. Leave can be extended by up to 11 weeks in the event of pregnancy or childbirth related illnesses, and up to 12 months if the child is hospitalized.


Employees are entitled to a monthly minimum wage. If there are no individual or collective agreements between the parties, a bonus related to seniority, attendance or assiduity is required.

Vacation Leave

Employees receive 24 days of annual leave, and this increases by two days after 15 years of service, four days for employees with 20 years of service, six days after 25 years and eight days after 30 years. Collective bargaining agreements may provide for more leave.

Public Holidays
  • New Year’s Day
  • Easter Monday
  • Labour Day
  • Laylat al-Qadr
  • Ascension Day
  • Eid al-Fitr
  • Whit Monday
  • Eid al-Adha
  • Cote d’Ivoire Independence Day
  • Feast of Assumption
  • MawlidAll Saints’ Day
  • National Peace Day
  • Christmas Day
Health Insurance Benefits

The state provides universal health insurance, though employers may offer private healthcare insurance.

Employment / Termination / Severance

An employment contract may be terminated without notice and compensation by either of the parties during the probationary period. The probation period ranges from eight days to three months based on industry and whether employees are paid hourly or monthly. The employer must provide written notice. The period of notice required depends on whether the employee is paid monthly or in shorter intervals (hourly, daily, weekly, or bi-weekly). For monthly paid employees, the notice period generally is between one and four months depending on length of service. The required notice period for employees paid hourly, daily, weekly or bi-weekly generally is between eight days and four months depending on length of service. Employers must pay severance to employees with more than one year of service who are discharged for reasons other than misconduct or gross negligence. The severance amount is a percentage of the employee’s wages for the 12 months preceding the date of dismissal and ranges from 30% to 40% depending on length of service.

Local Laws & Regulations

We understand that local laws and regulations change and sourcing an accurate reference guide is not easy. Our data is researched and verified by our team of local international Employment Attorneys, HR and Benefit Professionals and Tax Accountants through our Atlas team and consultants, to ensure information up-to-date and accurate.

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