Rent Is Falling In Oil-Exporting African Countries As Expats Exit

The Angolan capital of Luanda is still the world’s second most expensive city for expats after Hong Kong, but rent for office space fell almost 50 percent in the past two years in the region’s top oil producing country, Bloomberg reported.

More than 20 percent of new office buildings in Luanda are empty.

“Luanda still has the highest office rents in Africa, but demand has virtually ground to a halt,” said Peter Welborn, the London-based head of Knight Frank’s Africa unit.

Monthly prime office rent in Luanda fell from $150 a square meter in 2015 to an average of $80 per square meter this year, according to real estate consultancy Knight Frank. In Abuja, rates dropped 45 percent to $33 a square meter. Lagos saw rent fall 21 percent to $67. Johannesburg, which is net importer of oil, saw office rents drop 23 percent, while Dar es Salaam held steady.

Rent has fallen for office space and luxury homes in Nairobi, where there’s an oversupply following an exit of expatriates, Business Daily reported.

Kenya became a hotspot for oil and gas exploration after 2012. British explorer Tullow Oil and partner Africa Oil struck oil in Turkana in 2012. Recoverable reserves are estimated at 750 million barrels of crude.

The price of crude has fallen more than 50 percent since mid-2014. Nigeria, the region’s second-largest oil producer after Angola, is in recession.

Industrial space rent is rising in Kenya

Rent in Nairobi malls has stagnated on increased supply. Rent for prime office has dropped 20 percent to $16 per square meter a month over the past two years. But Kenya is short of high-end industrial space.


Beautiful East Africa : Kenya

Full name: The Republic of Kenya
Location: Africa
Population: cc. 45 million
Capital City: Nairobi
Other Important Cities: Mombasa
Currency: 1 Kenya Shilling = 100 cents
Language(s): Swahili, English
Religion(s): Christianity
Calling Code: +254
Internet TLD: .ke
Electricity: 240V 50Hz

Emergency Numbers: 999

he landscape across Kenya is variable; from sweeping savannahs to tropical beaches and coral reef, dense equatorial forests to large snow- capped mountains… Which of course, all makes for great days out to explore! Plus as Africa’s original safari destination, the country attracts adventurers and travelers, and has been for many centuries.
Kenya is the home of Africa’s famous five – the lion, elephant, rhino, and leopard and buffalo, and is often considered the best place to see these five species in their natural habitats.
There’s plenty to see and do in the country on top of a safari. For example, the Gedi Ruins in the depths of Arabuko Sokoke forest, Haller Park in Mombasa, Fort Jesus – the UNESCO World Heritage Site – in Mombasa and the Nairobi National Museum.

Residents Visa and Work Permit information

Temporary Stay Visa
Passports must be valid for three months from date of entry and nationals of the following countries do not need visas to travel to Kenya:
Bahamas, Bangladesh, Barbados, Botswana, Brunei-Darussalam, Cyprus, Dominica, Ethiopia, Fiji Islands, Gambia, The, Ghana, Grenada, Jamaica, Kiribati, Lesotho, Malawi, Maldives, Mauritius, Namibia, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, San Marino, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Solomon Islands, St Lucia, St Vincent & The Grenadines, Swaziland, Tanzania, Tonga, Turkey, Tuvalu, Uganda, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Zambia, Zimbabwe
**If you are NOT a citizen of any of the above countries and you wish to enter Kenya, you must obtain a visa in advance to enter the country.
Applications from Nationals of the following countries have to be referred to Nairobi for approval: Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Cameroon, Iran, Iraq, Lebanon, Libya, Mali, Nigeria, North Korea, Pakistan, Senegal, Somalia, Tazikstan, Yemen, Stateless Persons. Persons falling under the above category are advised to apply at least three months before the proposed.

International Schools

International School of Kenya
ISK provides an exemplary education offering both the International Baccalaureate and the North American diploma.  We prepare students within a culturally diverse community to become informed, independent thinkers and responsible world citizens.
Curriculum: North American
Address: International School of Kenya, PO Box 14103, 00800 Nairobi, Kenya
Tel: +254 720 639 363

Nairobi International School
To provide technology based education to students of all races, religions and nationalities,  through a fellowship that carries with it, enormous choices and responsibilities, by giving opportunities to lead a life of learning through dedicated study, while committing themselves to personal growth, integrity, self-discipline and caring for each other, as “Creative Re-thinkers”, whether at NIS or elsewhere.
Address: Nairobi International School, PO Box 66831, 00800 Nairobi, Kenya
Tel: 020 215 4672 / 020 204 3146


Prices for housing
Apartments with 3 bedrooms are around Ksh 40,000 to 60,000 per month including 24h security of the compound. Maisonettes (or town houses) usually have a small garden and parking within the compound and go for around 40,000 to 80,000 per month. Houses with 3 to 5 bedrooms are around Ksh 60,000 to 150,000 per month, depending on location, size of garden, etc. For houses, the price does not include security. In Kenya it is advised to have 24h security. So you should add around 15,000 per month. for 24h security through one of the major companies.

Expat Clubs

American Women’s Association of Kenya
American Women’s Association (AWA) is a non-profit, charitable organisation promoting community services and development and volunteering opportunities in Kenya as well as providing social and cultural activities for our multi-national members.

Kenya Quilt Guide
A vibrant cosmopolitan group of around 130 women – and one man – who all love the art of quilting.The largest group is based in and around Nairobi where meetings are held monthly and an active weekly Workshop gives members the chance to meet and work on group projects. Smaller groups meet regularly at members’ homes and offer each advice and support on their individual projects.


Tanzania’s power play

With a president cultivating a no-nonsense reputation and an economy set to be supercharged, Tanzania is making sure its voice is heard throughout the region. 

 You are on holiday. Perhaps in Kenya’s Maasai Mara game reserve. The thought occurs: How about crossing to the world-famous Serengeti, on the Tanzanian side? Foiled … The switch won’t be easy, requiring a five-hour detour, another visa and a new set of immigration rules. 

For nearly four decades now, Tanzania has maintained a blockade of ­Bologonja, a border crossing between the Maasai Mara and Serengeti. It claims access for mass tourism could harm the ecosystem of the world heritage site, which “harbors the largest remaining unaltered animal migration in the world,” according to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation. 

But ever keen to do business and tap its tourism potential, Kenya sees this differently. It argues that its southern neighbor is out to make business unsustainable for Kenyan tour operators who ferry curious visitors eager to witness wildebeests on the march.

What you are witnessing are age-old rivalries, so bitter they have defied a wave of economic integration slowly sweeping across the continent. 

And they are just two of many regional disputes involving Tanzania that have earned the country a reputation as a spiky neighbor.

Voicing a popular view, Uganda’s minister for general duties Tarsis Kabwegyere said in February on a television talk show: “The political class in Tanzania is not yet attuned to regional integration.”

‘Coalition of the willing’

During March 2016 talks with Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta, he and Tanzania’s President John Magufuli agreed to form a joint ministerial commission to resolve outstanding issues related to the Maasai Mara-Serengeti conflict. Yet Tanzanian foreign minister Augustine Mahiga, who was selected to chair the commission, has not held a meeting since. “Tanzania is looking beyond traditional tourism,” says Mahiga.


Immigration News and Updates

Mozambican officials have begun conducting audits of employers in Cabo Delgado province in an effort to find violations of immigration and labor law.
Mozambique recently tightened several laws on foreign work permits, and the government is conducting regular employer audits that may be scheduled or unannounced.
Further to the recent inspections undertaken in Maputo Province, the General Labor Inspectorate of the Ministry of Labor has now extended its site visits to Cabo Delgado province, initially focusing on mining and construction companies that are based there.
Employers may be fined for employing a worker without a work permit where one is required, and repeat offenders may have their facilities closed. Fines are determined on a case-by-case basis, depending on the type of violation involved. In addition, the government will publish the details of noncompliant companies and foreign workers in the local media. Foreign nationals working without a work permit may be fined and are frequently deported.

Foreign nationals applying for or renewing residency permits are now required to fill out a new form with additional personal details and submit it to the main police station in Casablanca.
The form is comparable to a resume in asking about educational background and work experience, but also seeks information about the applicant’s family members, religion, political membership and previous travel.
To avoid delay, all pending and future applications for residence permits should include the new form.

South Africa
South African authorities have said they will put recently announced changes on the validity period of visas on hold pending further discussions.
Visas will remain valid beyond the expiration date of a visa holder’s passport and, pending further notification, authorities will continue to recognize the transfer of an existing visa from an old passport to a new passport. A Department of Home Affairs instruction that had aimed to change these rules has been scrapped.
South African authorities said earlier this month that visas would automatically expire 30 days before the expiration date on a visa h
older’s passport, regardless of for how long the visa was initially issued. BAL has learned, however, that the government has put this change on hold and will discuss the matter further. This means that for visas issued with a validity period that extends beyond the validity period of a passport, authorities will allow visa holders to travel into South Africa with their expired passport, their visa and their new passport. Those already in South Africa can transfer their visa from an old passport to a new passport.
South Africa’s reversal on a policy that would have created extensive administrative burdens on employers and visa holders is welcome news. That said, officials appear to be reviewing the policy, and additional change is still possible.

Kenya has made it easier for stateless persons, migrants and their descendants to obtain citizenship.
A new regulation allows authorities to waive fees and documentation requirements for stateless persons, migrants and their descendants who are applying for citizenship and meet other qualifying criteria.
The change was made to provide the right to obtain citizenship to residents of Kenya who would otherwise be eligible for citizenship but who lacked proper documentation and, in some cases, the ability to pay the required government fees. After the regulation was issued, for example, members of the Makonde community, who have lived in Kenya for more than 50 years but were considered stateless persons, are now able to obtain citizenship.
The change will not have much of an impact on business, other than to facilitate evidencing the right to work of formerly stateless employees, but the eased processes are welcome news for those in Kenya who have had trouble obtaining citizenship because of a lack of supporting documents.

This information was sourced from

About our team: Rene Stegmann, Director, MBA, MIM, GMS

Thesis on Hurdles and Costs Relating to Expats in Africa (2000); qualified as a Global Mobility Specialist (GMS).Rene-Stegman-Profile15

Rene has been running Relocation Africa since and has delivered a diverse portfolio of programs and services regarding migration to the African continent. Relocation Africa’s services now include Research (surveys) and International Payroll/payment management services for African countries. Rene also provides HR consultation services to Corporates investing into Africa. As a SARA member, Rene contributes to the local remuneration industry as well as infusing the ERC with some African exposure.  Relocation Africa is a proud member of TIRA and she was elected Vice President of the association (2016).  Her company holds many prestigious awards and Rene was recognized for her valuable contribution to the MI Group’s Worldwide Partner Network International Advisory Council (2014/’15).  Rene and her family live in Cape Town where she and her husband, Andrew, work together.   Her undying love for what she does can be seen in every aspect of how Relocation Africa conducts business.