Conditions for employment in Zimbabwe: what are the rules for foreigners



Conditions for employment in Zimbabwe: what are the rules for foreigners

Zimbabwe is an African country with lower middle income and high unemployment. In 2017, a coup d'état took place there and removed from power the local oligarchic dictator Robert Mugabe, who had held the presidency since 1987. One of the reasons for this was high unemployment, but the situation did not improve after the coup, with inflation peaking at 175% in 2019. The main industries are mining, agriculture, and tourism. The country mines iron, gold, diamonds, asbestos, hard coal, silver, nickel, and platinum – all of which make up 26% of the GDP. There are also textile and tobacco companies, as well as agricultural product processing plants.
The most prestigious jobs can be found in the capital, Harare. Here they offer jobs as a video editor, 3D designer, and chief cyber security engineer. One of the most popular jobs in Zimbabwe is teaching English. But if you have professional skills, you can find work in oil refineries, tourism, journalism, or get a job as an engineer. It is still possible to get a job as a scientist, but for that, you need to have contacts with the Research Council of Zimbabwe.
Zimbabwe has representation from many global brands such as Unilever, L'Oreal, Heineken, Philips, etc. Currently, russia and China are particularly interested in working with the Zimbabwean government and developing their businesses in the country. For example, one of the vacancies is that of an integration engineer for russian mobile phone operator Vodafone.
A particular feature of the local labor market is that employers usually advertise not on job-seeking websites, but in print, newspapers distributed in rural areas, such as The Herald.


Several vacancies are listed below. Characteristically, the job sites do not indicate the potential salary.
  1. Brand ambassador for Mukuru, a remittance company in Africa and Asia. Not only is it necessary to advise customers, creating a 'harmonious environment in the queues at the checkout counter in the office, but also wet clean the premises every 48 hours and organize office supplies.
  2. Sales consultant at Teklink IT. Main responsibilities include B2B collaboration. Requires knowledge of corporate marketing and CRM.
  3. Video editor for Village Talkies based in Bangalore, India. You must be able to generate fresh, out-of-the-box ideas - the company shoots advertising and informational videos about brands and companies.
  4. A specialist for the VAAL'S cleaning company who'd have to check contracts with clients.

Documents needed

The employer must submit the following documents:
  • an application addressed to the Director of the General Immigration Office (Chief Executive),
  • pay a fee of $500,
  • a completed application form of the candidate employee for a residence permit,
  • letter of offer of employment,
  • proof of English language skills and experience in the occupation,
  • two certified passport photographs,
  • birth and marriage certificates.

The employer must also apply for the employee's temporary stay and a 'residence permit'.
One job search site recommends first negotiating with the employer for employment and then submitting a formal application. Taking into account the very nature of the country, you will need to come to Zimbabwe in person to do this. There are three categories of people to enter Zimbabwe. "Category A" are Zimbabwean citizens, certain foreign nationals living in Zimbabwe, and citizens of certain countries who do not need a visa. "Category B" are citizens of the EU, the USA, and other countries who receive a visa at the airport upon arrival. "Category C" are India, Pakistan, and other countries whose citizens must apply before entry.


Zimbabwe's main tax laws are the Income Tax Act, the Capital Gains Tax Act, the Value Added Tax Act, the Customs and Excise Act, and the Stamp Duty Act. The Finance Act sets the rates at which taxes are levied. Zimbabwe generally levies a tax on companies and individuals under the Income Tax Act. There are no regional taxes in the country.
In addition to ordinary income tax, 3% of total income is deducted from employees as an AIDS tax - as, in many African countries, there is an ongoing epidemic of the disease.
The social security contribution is 3.5% of the employee's earnings, and 3.5% of the pension contribution is also deducted – a total of 7%, but the total should not exceed 5 000 Zimbabwean dollars (US$132).
However, those who are not Zimbabweans, do not have permanent residence in Zimbabwe, have diplomatic status, or work as domestic workers are exempt from paying National Social Security Authority contributions.