Returning to your country of origin involves carrying out many administrative procedures to ensure that the installation runs smoothly. Depending on the country you visit, these may differ. To understand the different stages to which the “repats” are submitted, we propose you to discover how to settle in Senegal and Ghana.
The installation in Senegal
If you have a French passport, you are required to have a resident card issued after 3 months in Senegal. This can be requested from the Aliens and Travel Documents Department. This document must be renewed every year for approximately 15 000 CFA, which allows you to claim a foreign identity card whose validity period is 5 years. Please note that the rate of the resident card varies according to the nationality.
Consular registration is required to complete your administrative formalities. This allows you for example to renew your passport, to receive social assistance if necessary or, if you want to vote in France, to register on the electoral lists. If necessary, you are also protected.
The arrival on the Senegalese territory
All types of goods you want to import must be declared. Nevertheless some of them are exempt from taxes, it can be for example of your furniture. To take advantage of this exemption, you must have the following documents:
- Detailed inventory validated by the embassy or consulate, certificate confirming that the furniture has been in use for at least 6 months. You must also have proof of purchase.
- certificate stating that you change residence with the visa of the embassy or consulate.
Vehicles are excluded from this franchise.
The first steps to be taken
Opening a bank account involves having a certified copy of your passport, a proof of address and your last 3 payslips.
Payments by bank cards are quite rare, even if they become more democratic. It is better to have liquid on you.
Regarding communications, the mobile phone is still very popular compared to the landline with more than 10 million subscribers. Sonatel’s Orange network has a monopoly on fixed lines. Opening a fixed line involves presenting your passport and completing a subscription request at one of the many Orange branches.
A variable cost of living in Senegal
In Dakar, the price of rents is relatively high. For a one-room apartment located in downtown (Plateau), you should have an average of 500,000 CFA (800 euros), and 190,000 CFA (300 euros) near the city center and less than 160,000 FCFA ( around 250 euros) in neighborhoods not far from the city center.
Attention according to the chosen district, the price scale is very variable. It is best to avoid going through a broker. Privilege a real estate agency with a storefront or a recommendation by knowledge to avoid disappointments.
The employment sector in Senegal
Most of the African diaspora who choose to settle in Senegal has already found a job when they settle in the country. Recruitment of personnel with a nationality other than Senegalese can not be carried out without prior authorization.
The foreign employment contract must be validated by the Ministry of Labor, while the local one is validated by the Labor Inspectorate.
The most sought-after profiles are: administrative and financial managers, technicians and engineers from industry and construction, lawyers in the field of telecoms.
Prospect directly with companies on the spot, contact international recruitment firms, not to mention social networks such as Facebook, Viadeo or LinkedIn.
The school system in Senegal
Senegal is home to around 330 schools and dozens of French schools. However due to lack of budget on the part of the state, the school system is liberalized. Therefore, there are many private schools and universities. These are not supervised by the Senegalese government.
Two systems coexist: the French one and the Anglo-Saxon one. In the public school system, courses are mainly taught in Wolof.
It is better to go to a French or American school. The tuition fees differ according to the schools, nevertheless, it is necessary to count for the kindergarten about 80 000 FCFA per month for a whole day.
For older students, many of them are tested to control their level. It is strongly advised to contact the schools as soon as you arrive or even before to know if they can receive your children.
To settle in Ghana
To settle in Ghana implies to have a job, it can very well be about entrepreneurship, a housing as well as a vehicle, the system of public transport being only little developed, it is better to have ‘a vehicle.
To stay in Ghana
If you decide to move to Ghana without first finding a job, it is better if you save between € 15,000 and € 20,000, which allows you to work for two years without working.
The Ghanaian currency is Ghanaian Cedi, it takes about 1 euro for 5 GHS. The Ghanaian real estate system is very special. In addition to the rental rates that vary depending on the size and location of the dwelling, tenants are required to pay two years rent.
Rentals do not work on the system of a monthly settlement. Rents are paid every two years. For example, for an apartment whose rent is 154 euros (800 GHS), you must pay the landlord or the real estate agency 3,700 euros for the next two years. This measure aims to reduce unpaid rents.
Obtaining a visa for Ghana
Like any other trip in the world, travelers must have a passport.
With the exception of nationals of the ECOWAS zone, individuals wishing to settle in Ghana must have one of the following documents:
- Visa approved entry
- To be admitted as a diplomatic status by the Government of Ghana
There are different types of visas:
- Visitor / Tourist
- Business visa
- Visa studies
- Employment Visa
- Transit visa
- Press / Filming team
Depending on the number of entries in the country that you plan to make over a defined period, the price of the visa differs
- Single entry: 50 euros
- Multiple entry for 3 months: 100 euros
- Multiple entry for 6 months: 150 euros
- Multiple entry for 12 months: 200 euros
For French nationals, visa applications are to be made to the Ghana Embassy in Paris. It takes 5 days to obtain the visa. The settlement of the amount of the visa, on the spot, is done exclusively in cash.
The length of stay granted by the embassy does not depend on the type of visa but only the consular agent who takes care of your file. This one will not be beyond two months.
If your stay lasts more than 3 months, you must have a residence permit. Upon arrival, visit the Visa Desk at Kanda Ward.
Only after living in Ghana for six years can you obtain a foreign identity card. Foreign nationals over the age of 6 and residing in Ghana for more than 90 days are required to register with the National Identification Authority, which will issue a temporary ID card.
The labor market in Ghana
The average wages, under local contract, are between 200 GHS is 40 euros and 500 GHS about 100 euros monthly. It is better to arrive having already found a job.
Installation in a new country must be well thought out. Taking the plunge requires availability on the spot at the time of the move.
Installation in a new country must be well thought out. Taking the plunge requires availability on the spot at the time of the move. Despite the long and often complex steps to be taken both upstream and downstream, it is a real obstacle course, preparing to leave in the best conditions, everything is possible.