Work and live in Kenya
Finding work in Kenya and integrating into the socio-economic system of this country can be a challenge. Unemployment affects around 20% of the working population. However, as long as you have qualifications, you have the possibility of obtaining a work permit that allows you to undertake a professional activity.
Foreign workers in Kenya
Any foreigner who wishes to exercise a professional activity, salaried or not, must hold a work permit generally issued for two years. The possession of this document is essential. If the foreigner does not have this document, the foreigner does not have the right to exercise a professional activity in Kenya
To obtain it, you must hold a diploma or certificate or even a professional qualification in an industry in which there is a lack of qualified indigenous labor.
The establishment of a work permit for foreigners is a way of managing the flow of expatriate workers. It is issued by the Immigration Service in Nairobi. However, foreign workers can obtain this permit from their country of origin. All useful information is available on the website of this service. Otherwise, you can also get information from the High Commission of the Republic of Kenya.
Kenya’s official language is English. Knowledge of this language will facilitate your stay and your integration, especially since it will allow you to familiarize yourself with the local population. It is thus a working tool and an integration instrument that will improve your living conditions in Kenya.
The residence permit (or work permit ) must be obtained to work in Kenya. It must be requested upon your arrival in the country and this before engaging in any formal activity.
It is illegal to work in Kenya without a valid residence permit. Anyone who engages in a commercial or industrial activity, without being authorized is guilty of an offense liable to a fine between 20,000 KES and 500,000 KES, or a two-year prison sentence.
The mere filing of the file with the immigration service does not authorize the person to work. A similar penalty is imposed on all those who employ a person without a work permit.
The residence permit is issued for a period of one or two years by the immigration service, located at Nyayo House, Uhuru Highway in Nairobi.
Type of residence permit
CLASS A PERMIT
Employment within a mining company- The cost of this residence permit is 250,000 KES per year, plus procedural costs of 10,000 KES.
CLASS B PERMIT
Employment within a farm (example: horticulture) – The cost of this residence permit is 100,000 KES per year, plus procedural costs of 10,000 KES.
CLASS C PERMIT
A specific job that cannot be occupied by an employee of Kenyan nationality- The cost of this residence permit is 100,000 KES per year, plus procedural costs of 10,000 KES.
CLASS D PERMIT
All jobs without specificity- The cost of this residence permit is 200,000 KES per year, plus procedural costs of 10,000 KES.
CLASS F LICENSE
Employment in the industrial sector-The cost of this residence permit is 100,000 KES per year, plus procedural costs of 10,000 KES.
CLASS G PERMIT
Shareholder, investor, consultant in a company registered with the Kenyan authorities. A bank guarantee is required for investors. The cost of this residence permit is 100,000 KES per year, plus procedural costs of 10,000 KES.
CLASS I PERMIT
NGOs or religious activities. The cost of this residence permit is 5,000 KES per year, plus procedural costs of 1,000 KES.
CLASS K PERMIT
It concerns foreign nationals who wish to settle in Kenya for their retirement. They must have sufficient annual income from sources outside Kenya or have the capital to invest in Kenya. Applicants for this type of permit must agree not to accept paid employment of any kind. The cost of this residence permit is 100,000 KES per year, plus procedural costs of 10,000 KES.
CLASS M PERMIT
Residence permit for refugees-The cost of this residence permit is zero.
List of major cities that foreigners can find work: