Work permits in Kenya are regulated by the Kenya Citizenship and Immigration Act of 2011 and the regulations thereof.
There are several classes of work permits and in this writing we shall discuss the Investors work permit.
For any foreigner seeking to invest in Kenya depending with the nature of the Investment there is normally a class of work permit designated for the each.
The Class of work permit that is normally granted to foreign investors is known as Class G work permit which is granted to a person who intends to engage , whether alone or in partnership in a specific trade, business, consultancy or profession (but not prescribed profession e,g doctors, lawyers etc) . However for foreign Investors who wish to engage in; Prospecting for minerals or mining, Agriculture and animal husbandary and specific Manfacturing are normally issued with Class A, B and F work permits respectively.
It is noteworthy ,that for one to be granted with the Investor’s work permit one must provide proof of Investment capital of not less than 100,000 USD equivalent to Kes 10 Milion. This requirement is provided for under the Kenya Investment Promotion Act . In addition to this, the investment must also be of benefit to the Kenyan economy in that one must at least demonstrate that the business, trade or profession one wishes to engage in will contribute to the national development. Further it is crucial to note that whereby the business /trade/profession that one intends to engage in is reckoned not to be of the benefit to the nation’s economy the Director of Immigration is mandated to decline such application.
The Director of Immigration is also mandated to invalidate any work permit including investors’ work permits; if for instance if it was obtained through fraud means or any other factors as provided for under the Act.
In conclusion it is worthwhile to note that permits including investors work permits are subject to renewal once they have expired ,generally work permits cannot only be issued not less than one (1) and not more than Five (5) years. The period in which any permit is granted is discretional and mainly investors permits are normally issued for a period of two(2) years.