How to get a Residence
Permit in Ghana:
In order to reside in Ghana legally, there
are a few basic procedures that all must go through, whether you are an African
born in the Diaspora (repatriate) or a European (expatriate) seeking to
exploit Ghana's vast resources, the rules apply the same. Residency is
given to the following categories:
Note that there is no special
consideration for those of us, whose parents were shipped out as human cargo, so
don't waste much time expecting a red carpet, rather come in and prepare to
fight for your rights, enlightening those we come into contact with and leaving
an impact that will force the government to acknowledge the need to make
provisions for returning repatriates. Nothing speaks like positive works.
Most commonly, those relocating to Ghana
take advantage of the investment incentives offered by Ghana government, through
its extension known as the Ghana Investment Promotion Center. After
complying with a few requirements, G.I.P.C. will write to Ghana Immigrations on
your behalf, for your residence permit. The incentives for investing in
Ghana include tax holidays, protection of interests under specific laws and an
opportunity to legally operate your business in Ghana, but the most significant
reason is to be granted permission to reside in Ghana. However, one
should note the following first:
Investment in all sectors of the
economy other than mining and petroleum can be established without prior
approval. Mining and petroleum projects have be licensed by the
Minerals commission and Ministry of Mines and Energy, respectively.
There are categories for every investor,
where a minimum equity contribution has to be met:
Joint Venture (90% foreign owned, 10% Ghanaian)
Foreign Owned (100% foreign owned)
All trading Enterprises (stores)
Exportation of non-traditional exports
no minimum required
The minimum equity investment can be in
cash and/or kind. Machinery and equipment relevant to the objective of
your business is added as part of the investment once it is imported in the name
of the company and inspected by an official in Ghana.
All of the above categories allow for one
immigrant quota, providing residence permit for that person and his or her
family, if they are the director of the company. Additional quotas are
available for $1,200 per person.
The procedure is undoubtedly tedious and
time consuming, however, we have ways of simplifying it for you, but first,
consider the requirements in their totality and then we will present your
options. The procedure is as follows:
Investors must register their business
with the Register General. At this point you will determine
availability of chosen name, incorporate your business and receive the
appropriate docs to verify your registration.
A bank account must be opened, in the name
of the business, to facilitate wiring in of investment capital and all
other business transactions.
Investors must now provide the minimum
equity investment required for business type either by wire transfer or the
importation of business equipment.
The investor then registers with G.I.P.C.
and pays all relevant fees. (Prior to this phase, fees should not exceed $100
USD, but with G.I.P.C. the minimum cost of fees for any type of business will be
about $1,300 USD.
All enterprises must then register
directly with the Internal Revenue Service and the Value Added Tax Secretariat
for purposes of statutory taxes.
Please refer to our page on Doing
Business in Ghana for greater detail.
This route is less commonly used by
incoming repatriates, but it offers a wonderful alternative to those of us who
intend to make our impact via strengthening the environment in which we live.
An NGO is the same as a non-profit outfit. Its objectives are to serve the
community. Due to the misuse of the privileges appropriated to such
organizations, there has been many new restrictions and constant annual checks
to insure that the NGO is operating as promised and yielding positive results.
One of the areas most needed and most readily accepted by Ghana government is in
the area of education. Health care workers also receive a welcome
invitation as well as those who promote development in the rural areas of Ghana,
whether it be providing water wells, lavatories, or processing plants for the
better production of non-traditional exports.
There are no minimum equity investments
for a NGO, but the outfit must show sponsorship from a parent company who will
be responsible for the expenses of operation, that is, the salary of its
employees and the funds to embark on the various projects.
Registration is done both through the
Register Generals office and then through the NGO office in Ghana. An annual
submission must be made to verify compliance with stated goals and objectives.
Students are given permission to reside in
Ghana for the extent of their term in school. This category is just above
tourist and really doesn't attract a residency permit, but an extended visa.
There are various exchange programs available through the schools who are
affiliates with our universities, however, if a foreigner wishes to apply for to
one of our universities and can pay the fees, he or she will be enrolled and
given permission to stay in the country until the courses are complete.
The main universities are: