The Ghanaian government has immigrant quotas in place that limit the number of foreigners who can be employed by companies operating in Ghana. Aimed at reducing unemployment in the country and increasing international investment, these quotas are generally based on the company or organisation’s investment in Ghana.

For foreigners who can secure a job in Ghana, the next step is to apply for both work and residence permits. Because the work permit application process must be started in Accra, most employers assist with it.

Application process for work permits for Ghana

Work permits in Ghana are also known as Grants of Employment Quota. Applications must be done in person at the Ghana Immigration Services headquarters in Accra. In most cases, the employer will submit the documents on a foreign worker’s behalf before they arrive in the country.

Work permits are usually granted for one year, the length of the contract or a maximum of two years. After this period, expats must apply for a renewal.

The company applies for the work permit on behalf of the applicant with certain company-specific documents, but it also requires specific personal details and particulars of the expat. These are subject to change but usually include:

  • passport-sized photos
  • a curriculum vitae and supporting documents
  • letter of employment and employment contract
  • a copy of their passport
  • two references from Ghanaian citizens (one of which should be the employer)
  • police clearance report from the applicant’s home country
  • a medical certificate from a recognised Ghanaian hospital

The application process can take anywhere between two weeks and multiple months, so it’s vital to submit the application as soon as possible.

*Visa and work permit requirements are subject to change at short notice, and expats should consult their respective embassy or consulate for the latest details.

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