Zambian work permits and business visas

zambian work permits and business visasAny foreigner who wants to work or do business in Zambia, has to have a valid permit or visa. Without such a document, it would be impossible for yourself or your employees to take up a job or business activity.

Here we’ll guide you through Zambia’s work permits and business visa. 

Work permits

Temporary Employment Permit

The Zambian Department of Immigration has set up an entire department which solely deals with short-term work permit applications. These applications are therefore dealt with swiftly and efficiently.

Important to note:

The applicant is granted permission to work and be in the country as soon as the application is submitted.

Zambia’s immigration regulations require the applicant to be in Zambia while the application is being processed.

The permit is in the form of a permit book, which the applicants receives within 30 days of the submitting the application.

Validity period:

The Temporary Employment Permit is issued for up to 3 months. It can be renewed only once, for a further 3 months. The renewal has to happen in Zambia.

Employment Permit

The Employment Permit is issued to foreigners who enter the country to take up employment for a period exceeding six months. Applicants cannot enter Zambia until the permit has been approved and issued. This process takes up to 5 weeks.


The Employment Permit is issued for up to 24 months. Renewals are possible and simple. It happens through a process called ‘variation’. All that’s needed for this process are:

  • The new company registration documents.
  • Motivational letter.
  • Contract of employment.

Business visa

A Zambian business visa is intended for a person who comes to Zambia intending to attend:

  • Meetings;
  • Conferences;
  • Seminars;
  • Corporate events;
  • Business prospection missions, and to
  • Arrange business transactions;
  • Sign contracts,
  • Consult or advise; and for
  • Training and even learning as an observant in a classroom.

Validity period:

Business visas are issued for a maximum of 30 days annually. The visa holder can choose to use the 30 days in one single trip or to spread the days throughout the year.

Getting professional help with your Zambian permit or visa application

If you’d like to work with a team with established ties in Africa, we invite you to work with us.

Our team consists of experts with a wealth of knowledge and experience in immigration into Africa.

To see exactly how we can help you, email us or give us a call on 011 234 4275 to book a consultation. This consultation is free and non-obligatory. If necessary, our team can come to you for the consultation.

Our first piece of advice? Don’t leave it too late to get the process started.

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