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CÔTE D’IVOIRE | Deadline for Converting to New Biometric Residence Cards Fast Approaching

Nationals of non-ECOWAS (Economic Community of West African States) countries holding temporary residence permit cards in Côte d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast) have until February 1 to exchange their old residence cards for new biometric residence cards (Cartes de Résident). All unconverted temporary residence permits will become invalid on February 1. This deadline, originally set for December 31, 2017, has been extended. However, after February 1, any non-ECOWAS national resident in Côte d’Ivoire without a biometric resident card will be subject to a penalty.

Côte d’Ivoire has been in the process of transitioning over to a national biometric identification card system for its citizens over the past two years. See our previous Immigration Dispatch of August 14. Since August, applicants for new residence permits have been receiving the new biometric cards, which have a five-year validity period, an increase from the old card validity of one year.

Companies with non-ECOWAS foreign employees in Côte d’Ivoire should ensure those employees with the old form residence card have obtained the new biometric residence card from the Office Nationale d’Identification prior to February 1 in order to avoid penalties and complications with future immigration processes.

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Challenges of an African education

In addition to immigration complexities, security issues and cultural considerations, families relocating to Africa face the challenge of choosing a suitable education pathway. We look at the options.

Assignees moving to Africa often find the process uniquely challenging, owing to immigration complexities, security issues and cultural considerations. Those with school-age children face the added challenge of choosing a suitable education pathway. We look at the availability of international schooling in the region, and offer advice to help parents choose a school.With significant economic growth and one African country forming the ‘N’ in MINTs (Mexico, Indonesia, Nigeria and Turkey), the countries expected to become economic powerhouses of the future, the continent of Africa is coming into sharper focus in the world of global mobility as organisations across the world, in search of growth, look to it for new opportunities.The latest reports bear this out. EY’s 2016 Africa Attractiveness survey, Navigating Africa’s Current Uncertainties, found that, despite current uncertainties, the longer-term outlook for economic growth and investment in Africa remained positive.“The next few years will be tough – partly, even largely, as a result of a fragile global economy – but many African economies remain resilient, with two-thirds of sub-Saharan African (SSA) countries still growing at rates above the global average,” said the report.Even though growth across the region is uneven and likely to remain slower in coming years, SSA will continue for the foreseeable future to be the world’s second-fastest-growing region, after emerging Asia. Kenya, Tanzania, Mozambique and Ivory Coast are among 17 economies in the region that are forecast by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to have grown in 2016.Larger SSA countries, such as Nigeria and Angola, have been particularly affected by lower oil prices, and growth in South Africa remains slow.Foreign direct investment (FDI) projects increased by 7 per cent year on year, from 722 in 2014 to 771 in 2015. Africa is one of only two regions in the world to have seen growth in the number of FDI projects over the past year.

School choice

Luckily, international schooling has also seen something of a boom in the region. According to the latest figures from the International School Consultancy (ISC) Group, there are currently 792 English-medium international schools throughout Africa, between them teaching more than 339,000 students. ISC Research predicts that there will be more than 1,500 such schools by 2025.

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