What is the change? The Tanzanian government has issued a notice for all foreign workers to submit their work permits for review no later than March 21.

What does the change mean? Employers should also be aware that labor authorities are conducting nationwide inspections to verify that all foreign employees hold the appropriate work permits.

  • Implementation time frame: Immediate and ongoing.
  • Visas/permits affected: Work and residence permits.
  • Who is affected: Foreign workers in Tanzania and companies that employ them.
  • Business impact: Businesses and foreign nationals risk financial penalties and imprisonment for noncompliance of work permit laws.
  • Next steps: All foreign employees should submit their work permits to the nearest Labor Commission office for verification as soon as possible and no later than March 21.

Background: The Tanzanian Labor Commissioner recently issued the notice, giving all foreign nationals until March 21 to submit their work permits for review. The notice comes on the heels of a crackdown on Indian nationals found to be working on a water project without work authorization. The labor authorities will also undertake nationwide inspections of employers and employment agencies to enforce immigration regulations. Employers and foreign nationals who are out of compliance may be subject to steep financial penalties (a fine of not less than 10 million Tanzanian shillings—about US$4,480) and/or imprisonment (for a term not less than 12 months) for violations of the Non-Citizen Employment Regulations Act.

BAL Analysis: Foreign nationals should observe the March 21 deadline for submitting their work permits. Companies should be aware of the government’s renewed focus on immigration enforcement and be prepared for a labor inspection. Employers may wish to review their policies and procedures to confirm that they are in full compliance with immigration and work permit regulations.

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

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