Guide to employment, payroll and benefits in


Rivermate offers complete payroll, benefits and compliance services for


01. Overview

Last updated: 

August 19, 2021

Djiboutian Franc
Ease of doing business
GDP growth

02. Grow your team in


with Rivermate

Payroll, benefits, taxes, and compliance can be difficult to manage in


, particularly if you don't have established local relationships. You can hire employees in


effectively, conveniently, and in full compliance with all relevant labor laws using Rivermate's global employment solution. We handle the responsibilities and legal risks associated with foreign employment so you can concentrate on growing your company.

03. Summary

Djibouti is a country in the Horn of Africa. Its official name is the Republic of Djibouti. It is bordered on the south by Somaliland, on the southwest by Ethiopia, on the north by Eritrea, and on the east by the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden. Yemen is located across the Gulf of Aden. The nation covers a total area of 23,200 km2. It was once part of the Land of Punt, which included Ethiopia, Eritrea, and Somaliland. The medieval Adal and Ifat Sultanates were based in nearby Zeila, which is now part of Somaliland. Following treaties signed by the ruling Dir Somali sultans with the French in the late 1800s, the colony of French Somaliland was founded, and its railroad to Dire Dawa enabled it to quickly replace Zeila as the port for southern Ethiopia and the Ogaden. The French Territory of the Afars and the Issas was called the French Territory of the Afars and the Issas in 1967. The people of Djibouti voted for independence a decade later. The Republic of Djibouti, named after its capital city, was formally founded on this day. On September 20, 1977, the new state became a member of the United Nations. Tensions over government representation erupted into armed conflict in the early 1990s, which ended in a power-sharing agreement between the ruling party and the opposition in 2000. Djibouti is a multi-ethnic country with a population of over 921,804 people. The official languages of the country are French and Arabic, while the national languages are Afar and Somali. Approximately 94% of people follow Islam, which is the official religion and has dominated the area for over a thousand years. The two main ethnic groups are Somalis and Afars, with the former accounting for the bulk of the population. Djibouti is strategically situated near some of the world's busiest shipping lanes, regulating access to the Red Sea and Indian Ocean. Both speak the Cushitic branch of the Afroasiatic languages. It is a major refueling and transshipment center, as well as the primary maritime port for imports from and exports to Ethiopia. The nation, which is a burgeoning commercial hub, is home to a number of foreign military bases, including Camp Lemonnier. Djibouti City also serves as the regional headquarters for the Intergovernmental Authority on Development.

04. Public holidays

05. Types of leave

Paid time off

Within 12 months of service, employees are eligible for regular paid leave. From the first day of employment, they are entitled to two and a half days of paid leave per month, which equates to 30 days of paid annual leave. The boss determines the leave date, which is communicated to workers at least 15 days prior to the start of any leave. Leave can be divided into two 14-day increments.

Public holidays

New YearAl IsraLabour DayEid-al FitrIndependence DayEid-al AdhaMuslim New YearMouloudChristmas

Sick days

Employees are entitled to 29 days of maternity leave, which is charged at 50% of the basic wage. The employee is paid 75 percent of his or her minimum wage for any day after the 29th.

Maternity leave

Maternity leave is provided for 14 weeks for female workers. Any female employee is entitled to maternity leave that starts eight weeks before the expected due date and ends six weeks after the due date. In the event of complications that necessitate a medical record, the leave time can be prolonged by an extra three weeks. She is entitled to 15 months of breastfeeding rest on workdays until she returns to work. This rest period does not exceed one hour per working day, and it must be taken at the start or end of the day.When on maternity leave, eligible workers receive maternity benefits, which are divided evenly between the workplace and the Social Advancement Organization. Benefits are earned at a rate of one hundred percent of monthly earnings. To be considered, the employee must have at least three months of covered wages, have a medical card, and contact the employer at least one month prior to leave.

Paternity leave

Employees who are fathers are entitled to three days of paid parental leave.

Parental leave

Other than the already mentioned terms for maternity and paternity leaves, there are no other provisions in the Djibouti law regarding parental leave.

Other leave

06. Employment termination

Termination process

Employment can be ended jointly or unilaterally by either party if a minimal notice time has been met. Employers and workers who fail to submit the proper notice are obligated to pay the earnings earned during the notice period. Upon separation of service, all accumulated but unused leave is also paid out.

By providing at least 48 hours notice, an employment contract may be ended owing to an employee's incapacity to execute the work duties, for health reasons, for a lack of essential professional abilities, or for misbehavior.

If a pregnant female employee has a medical basis for terminating her position, she may do so without notice. This violation does not constitute a cause of action.

Fixed-term contracts automatically terminate on the contract's expiration date. They may, however, be terminated by either party for cause, including misbehavior, force majeure, economic and financial difficulties, court judgments, mutual consent, or an unjustifiable breach of the contract by one of the parties. Breach of contract occurs as a result of the failure to execute labor or other responsibilities, violence, violation of confidentiality, or persistent unexcused absence, to mention a few.

Unjust dismissal may entitle an employee to compensation. Damages cannot exceed two months' wages for employees in businesses with less than 11 employees; four months' wages for employees in businesses with 11 to 49 employees; or six months' wages for employees in businesses with more than 49 employees.

The employer is expected to notify the Labour Inspectorate in writing within eight days after the employee's termination of employment and to provide the employee with a certificate of work detailing the employee's entry and leave dates, as well as the nature of the job.

Notice period

Regular roles have a one-month notice period, while executive positions have a three-month notice period. The reason for the termination, the employer's name, social security number, address, the employee's name, date of employment, and professional credentials must all be included in the communication.

Severance pay

There are no regulations in Djibouti labor laws regarding severance payment.

Probation period

Probationary periods for indefinite-term contracts are allowed as follows. For hourly employees, probation lasts for 15 days. For monthly wage employees, probation lasts for 1 month. For supervisors, executives, and equivalent positions, probation lasts for 3 months. Probationary periods may be renewed once, and the renewal must be in writing.

07. Working hours


Standard work hours are limited to 47 hours per week, divided into six days of eight-hour days. A minimum of 24 hours of rest, which is typically on Fridays, is required. Evening work is defined as work performed between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.


Overtime is limited to four hours per day and sixty hours per week. Any hours worked in excess of the stipulated overtime hours require authorization from the labor inspector. However, the additional hours cannot exceed one-tenth of the weekly hours or the number of daily hours. Generally, overtime is compensated at the rates established by convention or collective bargaining.

08. Minimum wage


As part of the 2006 Labor Code, Djibouti abolished its national minimum wage in favor of occupational categories. Wages are now set by employers and employees as part of an employment contract. The minimum wage in the public sector is 35,000 DJF, or about $198 per month. The last time this was changed was in 2015.

09. Employee benefits


Some employers in Djibouti offer health insurance. Both public and private healthcare insurances are available.

10. Why Rivermate as your Employer of Record / PEO?

Establishing an entity in


to hire a team takes time, money, and effort. The labor law in


has strong worker employment protection, requiring great attention to details and a thorough awareness of local best practices. Rivermate makes expanding into


simple and effortless. We can assist you with hiring your preferred talent, managing HR and payroll, and ensuring compliance with local legislation without the hassle of establishing a foreign branch office or subsidiary. Our PEO and Global Employer of Record solutions in


give you peace of mind so you can focus on running your business.

Please contact us if you'd like to learn more about how Rivermate can help you hire employees in


via our Employer of Record / PEO solution.

Ready to get started? Our friendly staff is ready to assist you with all your questions, let's connect.