Ghana: How To Obtain Work Permit In The Petroleum Industry In Ghana

Last Updated: 1 November 2018
Article by David Danquah

In Ghana no foreigner shall employ or accept employment unless that person is granted a work permit or immigrant quota. Work permit or Immigrant quota is an authorization granted to an employer or employee to engage in lawful and gainful employment in Ghana. The work permit or immigrant quota specifies the job title and indicates the employer by whom that person is employed and the holder cannot engage in any other employment, business, profession or occupation in Ghana for reward than what is specified by the work permit or Immigrant quota.

Usually work permit is valid for a period of 1 year with the option of renewal. It must be noted however that, a foreigner that has been granted work permit or immigrant quota cannot start working immediately in Ghana unless that person is granted residence permit by the Director of Immigration to remain and work in the country.

From the forgoing introductory remarks, it is important for International Oil Companies (IOC's) and other industry players engaged in petroleum activities in Ghana to procure for their expatriate employees work permit from the relevant authorities before the commencement of work. For the purposes of this discussions, the relevant authorities are the Petroleum Commission (Commission) and the Ghana Immigration Service.

CONDITION PRECEDENTS

Prior to the application of work permit by a contractor, subcontractor, licensee and allied entity from the relevant institutions in Ghana, the following condition precedents enumerated below must be adhered to. The condition precedents listed below is engineered to ensure that, to all extents possible, employment opportunities are offered to Ghanaians with the requisite expertise, skills and experience. More importantly, it is to fulfill the requirement of the Petroleum (Local Content and Local Participation) Regulations, 2013 of Ghana (L.I 2204) that seeks to ensure that, employment opportunities in the upstream industry is offered to Ghanaian citizens at first instance. It is only after the inability to attract a suitable Ghanaian that, the offer will be made to an expatriate necessitating the application of a work permit by the employer.

The condition precedent includes the following;

  1. First and foremost, the employer/applicant must submit each vacant position with job description, qualifications and certification requirements of the position to the Commission at least three (3) clear months before the intended start date of the recruitment process. 

  1. The employer/applicant must thereafter conduct a search for qualified Ghanaians through advertisements for a minimum of one (1) week in at least two (2) national newspapers with nationwide circulation. For the avoidance of doubt, online and any other medium of advertisement are optional. 

  1. The employer/applicant must notify the Commission of each interview it seeks to conduct and the Commission may where it deems necessary sit in the recruitment interview(s), as an observer(s).
  1. Where a technically competent and experienced Ghanaian is not found through the prescribed advertisement, the applicant must submit the search results with photocopies of the advertisement plus CVs and interview transcripts of Ghanaian applicants to the Commission for review. After the review, the Commission shall communicate to the company if it qualifies to apply for work permit(s) for an expatriate worker for the particular role.
  1. The employer/applicant must thereafter submit each application for employment/engagement of a non-Ghanaian citizen to work in the upstream petroleum sector in Ghana in writing to the Commission at least three (3) months before the assumption of duty of the non-Ghanaian citizen.
  1. Where applicable, the employer/applicant must apply to the Commission for a waiver of the three (3) months notification requirement specified in Guideline 5 above, where there is an emergency or any other justifiable need. The Commission shall consider the application on its merit and make an appropriate decision based on national and business interests. Each application to employ/engage a non-Ghanaian citizen shall state:
  • The name of the company seeking to employ/engage the non-Ghanaian citizen;
  • The project/programme the non-Ghanaian citizen is to work on.
  • The specific role the non-Ghanaian citizen sought to be employed/engaged is to take up.
  • The specific qualification required for the role the non-Ghanaian citizen is to take up.
  • The number of years of experience required for the role the non-Ghanaian citizen is to take up.
  • The duration of the employment/engagement.
  • Whether the position in respect of which the application to employ/engage a non-Ghanaian citizen is a junior, middle level position, management, senior management, executive or advisory/consultant position.
  • Why a Ghanaian is not qualified to be employed/engaged to assume that role.

  1. Once approval is granted by the Commission for the employer/applicant to apply for work permit for an expatriate, the employer/applicant shall engage a Ghanaian successor(s) with similar professional background to be trained and coached by the hired expatriate until such time (localisation period) that the Ghanaian successor becomes capable to take over from the expatriate. The localisation period for individual applications shall be on case-by-case basis and shall be reviewed by both the applicant company and the Commission to agree on the specific time frame for localisation.

APPLICATION

Application for the work permit shall be lodge with the Commission for onward transmission to the Ghana Immigration Service. Under no circumstances should applications be made directly to the Ghana Immigration Service.

SUBMISSION OF APPLICATION FORMS AND RELATED DOCUMENTS

In order to apply for a work permit from Commission, the following related documents ought to accompany the application forms;

  1. Cover Letter.
  2. Bio data page of the prospective employer's passport.
  3. Company's certificate of Registration
  4. Company's certificate of incorporation.
  5. Company's certificate for commencement of business
  6. Valid Tax Clearance Certificate of the Company
  7. Medical Report of the Prospective Employee
  8. Police Report of the Prospective Employee
  9. Professional and Educational Certificate of Applicant
  10. Employment Contract issued by the Company
  11. Evidence of efforts made to recruit a Ghanaian.
  12. Completed Application Documents/ Forms
  13. Succession Plan
  14. CV of the Expatriate
  15. CV of the Ghanaian Successor

IMPORTANT CONSIDERATIONS

Contractors, subcontractors, licensees and other allied entities must take note of the following important consideration that serves as a determinant for the grant of the work permit after the submission of the relevant documents. 

  1. the cover letter must provide extensive justification for the employment of the expatriate by the company.
  2. the Police Report of the prospective employee must not be more than one (1) year old. More so, the Police Report must be issued by the relevant authorities of the home country of the prospective employee.
  3. the Medical Report of the prospective employee must not be more than two (2) years old. This must be issued by a medical officer from a recognized medical institution of the the home country of the prospective employee.

ASSESSMENT AND EVALUATION OF APPLICATION

Once submitted, the Commission will cause an extensive review of the application to ascertain whether all relevant documents have been submitted in consideration of the work permit. In some instances, the Commission will carry out site/facility inspections. The outcome of the review could be any of the following;

  1. application refused- meaning the application lacks merit.
  2. additional information required- meaning recommendation for approval will be subject to additional information being provided.
  3. application forwarded to the Ghana Immigration Service with a recommended term of permit- meaning the application satisfies all the requirements hence recommendation for approval by Ghana Immigration Service.

NOTICE OF ISSUANCE OF PERMIT

The contractor, subcontractor, licensee and the allied entity which made the application on behave of the expatriates shall be informed by the Commission the issuance of the work permit by the Ghana Immigration Service for pick up.

Click here to read the full article;

How To Obtain Work Permit In Ghana: Upstream Petroleum Industry.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Authors
David Danquah
Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
Legalstone Solicitors LLP
 
In association with
Related Topics
 
Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
Legalstone Solicitors LLP
Related Articles
 
Up-coming Events Search
Tools
Print
Font Size:
Translation
Channels
Mondaq on Twitter
 
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
 
Email Address
Company Name
Password
Confirm Password
Position
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Accounting
 Anti-trust
 Commercial
 Compliance
 Consumer
 Criminal
 Employment
 Energy
 Environment
 Family
 Finance
 Government
 Healthcare
 Immigration
 Insolvency
 Insurance
 International
 IP
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Litigation
 Media & IT
 Privacy
 Real Estate
 Strategy
 Tax
 Technology
 Transport
 Wealth Mgt
Regions
Africa
Asia
Asia Pacific
Australasia
Canada
Caribbean
Europe
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
U.K.
United States
Worldwide Updates
Registration (you must scroll down to set your data preferences)

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including your content preferences, for three primary purposes (full details of Mondaq’s use of your personal data can be found in our Privacy and Cookies Notice):

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting to show content ("Content") relevant to your interests.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, news alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our content providers ("Contributors") who contribute Content for free for your use.

Mondaq hopes that our registered users will support us in maintaining our free to view business model by consenting to our use of your personal data as described below.

Mondaq has a "free to view" business model. Our services are paid for by Contributors in exchange for Mondaq providing them with access to information about who accesses their content. Once personal data is transferred to our Contributors they become a data controller of this personal data. They use it to measure the response that their articles are receiving, as a form of market research. They may also use it to provide Mondaq users with information about their products and services.

Details of each Contributor to which your personal data will be transferred is clearly stated within the Content that you access. For full details of how this Contributor will use your personal data, you should review the Contributor’s own Privacy Notice.

Please indicate your preference below:

Yes, I am happy to support Mondaq in maintaining its free to view business model by agreeing to allow Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors whose Content I access
No, I do not want Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors

Also please let us know whether you are happy to receive communications promoting products and services offered by Mondaq:

Yes, I am happy to received promotional communications from Mondaq
No, please do not send me promotional communications from Mondaq
Terms & Conditions

Mondaq.com (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd (Mondaq). Mondaq grants you a non-exclusive, revocable licence to access the Website and associated services, such as the Mondaq News Alerts (Services), subject to and in consideration of your compliance with the following terms and conditions of use (Terms). Your use of the Website and/or Services constitutes your agreement to the Terms. Mondaq may terminate your use of the Website and Services if you are in breach of these Terms or if Mondaq decides to terminate the licence granted hereunder for any reason whatsoever.

Use of www.mondaq.com

To Use Mondaq.com you must be: eighteen (18) years old or over; legally capable of entering into binding contracts; and not in any way prohibited by the applicable law to enter into these Terms in the jurisdiction which you are currently located.

You may use the Website as an unregistered user, however, you are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the Content or to receive the Services.

You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these Terms or with the prior written consent of Mondaq. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information from the Content. Nor shall you extract information about users or Contributors in order to offer them any services or products.

In your use of the Website and/or Services you shall: comply with all applicable laws, regulations, directives and legislations which apply to your Use of the Website and/or Services in whatever country you are physically located including without limitation any and all consumer law, export control laws and regulations; provide to us true, correct and accurate information and promptly inform us in the event that any information that you have provided to us changes or becomes inaccurate; notify Mondaq immediately of any circumstances where you have reason to believe that any Intellectual Property Rights or any other rights of any third party may have been infringed; co-operate with reasonable security or other checks or requests for information made by Mondaq from time to time; and at all times be fully liable for the breach of any of these Terms by a third party using your login details to access the Website and/or Services

however, you shall not: do anything likely to impair, interfere with or damage or cause harm or distress to any persons, or the network; do anything that will infringe any Intellectual Property Rights or other rights of Mondaq or any third party; or use the Website, Services and/or Content otherwise than in accordance with these Terms; use any trade marks or service marks of Mondaq or the Contributors, or do anything which may be seen to take unfair advantage of the reputation and goodwill of Mondaq or the Contributors, or the Website, Services and/or Content.

Mondaq reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to take any action that it deems necessary and appropriate in the event it considers that there is a breach or threatened breach of the Terms.

Mondaq’s Rights and Obligations

Unless otherwise expressly set out to the contrary, nothing in these Terms shall serve to transfer from Mondaq to you, any Intellectual Property Rights owned by and/or licensed to Mondaq and all rights, title and interest in and to such Intellectual Property Rights will remain exclusively with Mondaq and/or its licensors.

Mondaq shall use its reasonable endeavours to make the Website and Services available to you at all times, but we cannot guarantee an uninterrupted and fault free service.

Mondaq reserves the right to make changes to the services and/or the Website or part thereof, from time to time, and we may add, remove, modify and/or vary any elements of features and functionalities of the Website or the services.

Mondaq also reserves the right from time to time to monitor your Use of the Website and/or services.

Disclaimer

The Content is general information only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice or seek to be the complete and comprehensive statement of the law, nor is it intended to address your specific requirements or provide advice on which reliance should be placed. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the Content for any purpose. All Content provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers hereby exclude and disclaim all representations, warranties or guarantees with regard to the Content, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Mondaq expressly excludes all representations, warranties, obligations, and liabilities arising out of or in connection with all Content. In no event shall Mondaq and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use of the Content or performance of Mondaq’s Services.

General

Mondaq may alter or amend these Terms by amending them on the Website. By continuing to Use the Services and/or the Website after such amendment, you will be deemed to have accepted any amendment to these Terms.

These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and you irrevocably submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales to settle any dispute which may arise out of or in connection with these Terms. If you live outside the United Kingdom, English law shall apply only to the extent that English law shall not deprive you of any legal protection accorded in accordance with the law of the place where you are habitually resident ("Local Law"). In the event English law deprives you of any legal protection which is accorded to you under Local Law, then these terms shall be governed by Local Law and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with these Terms shall be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts where you are habitually resident.

You may print and keep a copy of these Terms, which form the entire agreement between you and Mondaq and supersede any other communications or advertising in respect of the Service and/or the Website.

No delay in exercising or non-exercise by you and/or Mondaq of any of its rights under or in connection with these Terms shall operate as a waiver or release of each of your or Mondaq’s right. Rather, any such waiver or release must be specifically granted in writing signed by the party granting it.

If any part of these Terms is held unenforceable, that part shall be enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to give effect to the intent of the parties, and the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.

Mondaq shall not incur any liability to you on account of any loss or damage resulting from any delay or failure to perform all or any part of these Terms if such delay or failure is caused, in whole or in part, by events, occurrences, or causes beyond the control of Mondaq. Such events, occurrences or causes will include, without limitation, acts of God, strikes, lockouts, server and network failure, riots, acts of war, earthquakes, fire and explosions.

By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions