What is the change? Kenya has announced it will remove Cameroon, Mali and Senegal from its list of referred nationals who require special authorization to obtain a visa.

What does the change mean? Effective July 14, nationals of the three West African countries may apply for a visa online, at a Kenyan mission, or upon arrival at Kenya’s ports of entry.

  • Implementation time frame: July 14.
  • Visas/permits affected: Business visas.
  • Who is affected: Nationals of Cameroon, Mali, Senegal.
  • Impact on processing times: The easing of the policy will save time for those who would otherwise need pre-approval from Nairobi—a process that takes up to three months. E-visas are processed in approximately two days, consular visas in about five to seven days, and visas-on-arrival immediately upon entry.
  • Business impact: Business visits will be easier for nationals of the three countries, especially those traveling on short notice, as travelers will be able to apply for a visa online or travel without a visa and apply upon entry.

Background: Kenya requires certain “restricted nationals” to apply for a Referred Business Visa that requires special approval by the Directorate of Immigration Services in Nairobi.

BAL Analysis: The change in policy will facilitate business travel from Cameroon, Mali and Senegal. Travelers are reminded that work activities are proscribed while on a business visa and that hands-on or productive work requires an appropriate work pass.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in Kenya. For additional information, please contact

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