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Wednesday, 18 March 2009


This month the Government of Rwanda announced new visa and work permit fee regulations that exonerate East African Community (EAC) citizens from the latter and, reduce those for all other non EAC.

Initially all nationalities were supposed to pay Rwandan francs (RWF) 200,000 approximately 350 USD per year. Now EAC citizens will enjoy free work permit, and non EAC will pay RWF 50,000 (USD 88) per year.

This comes after it was announced last year that professionals from regional countries would get visa waivers as part of the country’s goodwill towards regional integration as well as improving the service sector.

A cabinet meeting last month endorsed several resolutions, including decrees relating to foreigners’ employment and entry and stay in the country.
Also clarified in the communiqué is that work permits are in two categories – A and B, foreigners whose monthly gross remuneration is “at least” RWF 500,000 (USD 880) and others whose monthly wage falls “below” RFW 500,000.
Annual work permit fees will change from Frw 200,000 to RWF 50,000 for category A and RWF 10,000 (USD 18) for B.
Outlined in the new regulations as well is that foreigners “coming to work or reside in Rwanda” and have paid for a work permit are exempted from resident visa fees.

In addition, resident foreigners “shall no longer be required to pay any deposit fee,” the Directorate underlines, besides cautioning all country employers to “follow these regulations.”
President Paul Kagame first announced this waiver in 2007 during the Commonwealth Business Summit that preceded the Commonwealth Heads of State and Government Meeting (CHOGM) that took place in Uganda that year.

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