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Discover everything you need to know about Angola

Hire in Angola at a glance

Here ares some key facts regarding hiring in Angola

Angolan Kwanza
GDP growth
GDP world share
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40 hours/week

Overview in Angola

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Angola, located in southwestern Africa, is bordered by Namibia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Zambia, and the Atlantic Ocean. It features diverse landscapes from coastal plains to rainforests and semi-deserts. Historically influenced by powerful kingdoms and later colonized by Portugal, Angola gained independence in 1975 after a prolonged struggle, followed by a civil war that lasted until 2002. Today, Angola is rich in natural resources like oil and diamonds, which drive its economy, though it faces challenges such as poverty, inequality, and economic dependency on oil.

The country has a population of over 33 million, with a diverse ethnic composition and Portuguese as the official language. Angola's workforce is predominantly low-skilled, with agriculture employing over half of the population. However, the oil and gas sector, while significant to the economy, is vulnerable to global price fluctuations. Other sectors like services, manufacturing, and construction are developing, with urbanization pushing growth in services and retail.

Culturally, Angola values strong family ties and has a preference for indirect communication to maintain harmony. Workplaces are hierarchical, and personal relationships are crucial for professional success. Efforts are ongoing to improve education and vocational training to address the skills gap and support economic diversification away from oil dependency.

Taxes in Angola

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Social Security Contributions in Angola

  • Employers and employees in Angola contribute a total of 11% of the employee's gross salary to the National Social Security Institute (INSS), with employers contributing 8% and employees 3%. These contributions provide benefits for family, pension, and unemployment.

Deadlines and Reporting

  • Contributions are due by the 10th of the following month, along with a monthly report to the INSS.

Taxable Income

  • Includes all compensation forms, with exceptions like social benefits and holiday allowances. Taxable income is subject to the progressive Employment Income Tax (PIT) and possibly local taxes.

Other Employer Taxes and Deductions

  • Employers may face other taxes such as PIT and local levies. Consumption taxes on goods and services may apply, with some professional fees subject to a 6.5% withholding tax.

VAT and Service Taxation

  • Most services in Angola are VAT taxable at a standard rate of 14%, with specific rules for non-residents and different rates for certain services. VAT compliance includes issuing compliant invoices and monthly VAT returns.

Tax Incentives and Special Economic Zones

  • The Private Investment Law (PIL) offers tax incentives based on investment size, sector, and location, including partial exemptions and accelerated asset depreciation. Special Economic Zones (SEZs) provide additional benefits, and sector-specific incentives are available, particularly in agriculture, oil, gas, and mining.

Important Considerations

  • Foreign earnings are generally exempt unless through a registered Angolan entity. Compliance with local tax laws, which are subject to change, is crucial. Engaging a local tax advisor is recommended to navigate the complex tax landscape and maximize incentives.

Leave in Angola

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  • Annual Leave: In Angola, employees are entitled to 22 working days of paid annual leave after completing one year of service. During the first year, leave accrues at 2 working days per month. Employees with children under 14 receive an additional day per child.

  • Sick Leave: Employees qualify for paid sick leave after three months of employment, with the duration depending on the length of service and requiring medical certification.

  • Maternity and Paternity Leave: Female employees receive 90 days of paid maternity leave, typically starting a few weeks before the due date. Fathers are entitled to 5 consecutive working days of paternity leave around the time of their child's birth.

  • Other Leave Types: This includes bereavement leave for the death of a close family member, marriage leave, and potentially study leave for further education or training.

  • Public Holidays: Angola celebrates various national, religious, and historical holidays, including New Year's Day, Martyrs of Colonial Repression Day, and Independence Day, among others. Dates for Carnival and Good Friday vary annually based on the lunar calendar.

  • General Notes: These provisions are the minimum standards set by the General Labor Law of Angola, and companies may offer more generous benefits. Employees should consult their employment contracts and company policies for specific details.

Benefits in Angola

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Angola's labor laws provide a robust framework of benefits for employees, ensuring financial security and work-life balance. Key benefits include:

  • Paid Leave: Employees are entitled to annual leave, public holidays, sick leave, and maternity leave.
  • Bonuses: There are two mandatory annual bonuses: the 13th salary (vacation bonus) and the 14th salary (Christmas bonus).
  • Social Security: Employers contribute to social security, which covers disability pensions and severance pay.
  • Other Benefits: These include a minimum wage, overtime pay, notice periods, and severance pay under certain conditions.

Additional non-mandatory benefits that employers may offer include:

  • Health and Life Insurance: While not required, many companies provide these insurances, especially in larger cities.
  • Flexible Work Arrangements: Options like remote work and flextime are available to enhance work-life balance.
  • Transportation and Meals: Companies may offer transportation allowances and subsidized meals.
  • Educational and Wellness Programs: Financial assistance for education and gym memberships are common perks.
  • Family-Friendly Benefits: These may include childcare subsidies and extended parental leave.

The public healthcare system in Angola is universally accessible but may have limitations in quality and wait times. Employers have the option to offer private health insurance, which can provide access to better healthcare facilities.

Regarding retirement, Angola has a public pension system managed by the Instituto Nacional de Segurança Social (INSS), with eligibility based on age and contribution duration. Private pension plans are also available, offering potentially higher returns and tax benefits.

Workers Rights in Angola

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Angolan labor law provides for employment contract termination on grounds such as serious misconduct, incapacity affecting performance, economic or structural reasons, and mutual agreement. Notice requirements vary, with disciplinary dismissals sometimes requiring no notice, while objective grounds require up to 60 days for collective dismissals. Severance pay is mandated for terminations based on objective grounds or mutual agreement, calculated based on service length and salary.

Employers must consult with employee bodies and the General Labor Inspectorate before mass layoffs and ensure non-discriminatory practices in the workplace. Discrimination based on factors like race, sex, or disability is prohibited, with the General Labor Law enforcing these protections. Victims of discrimination can seek redress through the General Labor Inspectorate or civil courts.

Employers are obligated to maintain a non-discriminatory environment, provide necessary training, and handle discrimination complaints effectively. Work conditions are regulated, including a maximum of 44 work hours per week, mandated rest periods, and general safety principles that may cover ergonomic requirements.

Health and safety regulations require employers to ensure a safe work environment, conduct risk assessments, provide safety equipment, and ensure health surveillance. Employees have the right to a safe workplace, refuse unsafe work, and access relevant training. The Ministry of Labor and Social Security enforces these regulations, with powers to inspect and penalize non-compliance.

Agreements in Angola

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Angola's General Labor Law (Law No. 7/15 of June 15, 2015) outlines various types of employment contracts, including indefinite-term, fixed-term, part-time, and apprenticeship contracts. Indefinite-term contracts offer the most job security without a specified end date, while fixed-term contracts are used for temporary needs with a maximum duration of 36 months. Part-time contracts involve reduced working hours with pro-rated benefits, and apprenticeship contracts are designed for training young workers, lasting up to 24 months.

For foreign nationals, fixed-term contracts are typically the only option, and all employment terms must be in writing. Although not always mandatory, written contracts are advised to clarify terms and protect both parties. These contracts should detail job roles, work location, contract type, duration, salary, benefits, working hours, leave entitlements, termination notice periods, and grounds for dismissal. They must adhere to Angolan law, particularly the General Labor Law.

The law also allows for probationary periods up to 180 days, during which either party can terminate the contract with shorter notice. Additionally, employment agreements often include confidentiality and non-compete clauses to protect business interests, enforceable under specific conditions regarding reasonableness and duration. Courts in Angola assess these clauses to ensure they do not overly restrict the fundamental right to work.

Remote Work in Angola

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Angola's economy is increasingly embracing remote work, though specific legal frameworks and best practices are still under development. The Angolan labor code does not specifically address remote work, leaving employers and employees to navigate core employment rights and obligations without clear guidelines. Employers are advised to create detailed policies covering work hours, communication, and equipment usage.

Technological infrastructure, particularly outside the capital, Luanda, remains a challenge. Employers must ensure that remote employees have reliable internet access and the necessary technology to perform their duties effectively.

Employer responsibilities in Angola include establishing comprehensive remote work policies, ensuring data security through measures like encryption and access controls, and maintaining effective communication and collaboration among remote and in-office employees. The absence of specific laws on data protection means employers must adopt international best practices to safeguard company data.

Flexible work arrangements such as part-time work, flexitime, job sharing, and telecommuting are covered under the Labor Code, but specifics like equipment and expense reimbursements are left to individual contracts or company policies. Clear communication about these policies is essential for successful implementation.

Overall, while Angola is adapting to more flexible work options, the development of a clear legal framework and better technological infrastructure will be crucial for the future of remote work in the country.

Working Hours in Angola

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Overview of Angola's General Labor Law

Angola's General Labor Law sets a standard workweek with specific regulations on working hours, overtime, and rest periods to ensure employee well-being. Here are the key points:

  • Standard Workweek: The workweek is capped at 44 hours, calculated over a contract period of less than a year or annually.
  • Daily Work Hours: Typically limited to 8 hours, with exceptions allowing extensions for certain agricultural, weather-related, or cultural activities, as long as the 44-hour weekly limit is not exceeded.
  • Overtime Regulations: Overtime requires mutual agreement and is capped at 2 hours per day, 40 hours per month, and 200 hours per year, with exceptions for emergencies. Compensation for overtime starts at 150% of the base salary for the first 30 hours monthly, increasing to 175% thereafter.
  • Rest Periods:
    • Daily Rest: A minimum of 12 consecutive hours between workdays.
    • Meal Breaks: At least a 30-minute paid break for workdays over 6 hours; 1-hour unpaid break for split workdays over 6 hours.
  • Night and Weekend Work:
    • Night Shifts: Work between 7 pm and 7 am, with a minimum compensation increase of 120%.
    • Weekend Work: Typically reserved for rest, with required compensation for work done during these days either through increased pay or compensatory rest.

Additional provisions include enhanced protections and compensations for night and weekend work, with specific considerations for pregnant women and agreements recommended for shift work schedules.

Salary in Angola

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Understanding and managing competitive salaries in Angola involves multiple factors and considerations. Key influences on salary levels include industry, experience, qualifications, location, company size, reputation, and inflation. For instance, salaries in the Oil & Gas and Finance sectors are generally higher than those in Education or Agriculture. Additionally, salaries in Luanda are typically higher than in rural areas due to the higher cost of living.

To determine competitive salaries, employers and employees can refer to salary surveys from firms like Mercer or Towers Watson, and check salary ranges on job boards. Regular benchmarking against industry standards is crucial for employers to maintain competitive salaries, especially considering Angola's high inflation rates.

The minimum wage in Angola varies by sector and is set by Presidential Decree, influenced by recommendations from the National Council of Social Dialogue. As of February 2022, the minimum wages are AOA 32,181.15 for Agriculture, AOA 40,006.44 for Transport, Services, and Manufacturing, and AOA 48,271.73 for the Extractive industry and Trade.

Employment benefits in Angola include mandatory bonuses such as the 13th Salary (Vacation Bonus) and 14th Salary (Christmas Bonus), both amounting to 50% of the base salary. Companies may also offer allowances for meals, transportation, housing, and family support, along with performance-based bonuses.

Payroll practices in Angola typically follow a monthly cycle, with mandatory inclusion of the 13th and 14th salaries. Employers must also manage overtime payments and tax withholdings as part of their payroll responsibilities.

Termination in Angola

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In Angola, the General Labor Law mandates specific notice periods for terminating employment contracts, varying by contract type and employee seniority. For fixed-term contracts over three months, a 15 working day notice is required. Indefinite contracts require a 15 to 60 day notice, depending on the duration of employment. Exceptions include termination during probation or for serious misconduct, where no notice is needed.

Severance pay is due to employees terminated for company-related reasons, provided they have at least six months of service. The amount is based on the length of service and salary, with specific calculations for up to and beyond five years of service. Exceptions to severance pay include dismissals for serious misconduct, probationary terminations, and voluntary resignation.

Termination types include mutual agreement, contract expiration, task completion, employee resignation, and employer dismissal, with or without cause. Legal compliance and proper documentation, especially in dismissals and large-scale layoffs, are crucial under Angolan law.

Freelancing in Angola

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In Angola, the distinction between employees and contractors is crucial for determining labor rights, social security contributions, and tax obligations. The Angolan Labour Law provides guidelines for this classification based on factors such as control, integration into the business, and economic dependence.

Control: Employees are under significant control by employers regarding work schedules, location, and methods, whereas contractors maintain autonomy over these aspects.

Integration into the Business: Employees are integrated into the company's structure, unlike contractors who operate independently and may serve multiple clients.

Economic Dependence: Employees generally depend on one employer for their income, while contractors have diverse income sources.

Benefits and Social Security: Employees receive mandatory benefits and social security contributions from employers, which are not applicable to contractors who handle their own.

For independent contractors, it's essential to have a well-defined contract covering scope of work, term and termination, compensation, confidentiality, and dispute resolution. Successful negotiation of these contracts involves understanding market rates, articulating value, flexibility in terms, and possibly legal counsel.

Common Industries: Independent contractors in Angola are prevalent in IT, oil and gas, construction, consulting, and creative industries.

Intellectual Property Rights: Contractors typically retain copyright of their creations unless a contract specifies otherwise. Works made for hire are an exception, where copyright might automatically belong to the hiring party.

Tax and Insurance: Contractors must manage their own tax and social security contributions, with specific filing requirements under Angolan law. While insurance isn't mandatory, options like health, professional liability, business interruption, and life and disability insurance are recommended for protection.

Understanding these distinctions and legal requirements helps ensure compliance and protection under Angolan law for both employees and contractors.

Health & Safety in Angola

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Angola's health and safety legislation, influenced by its Portuguese colonial past and international standards like those from the ILO, ensures workers' rights to safe working conditions through various decrees and laws. The primary legal framework is established by Decree No. 31/94, which sets out employer responsibilities and the formation of workplace safety committees. The General Labor Law further mandates employer obligations to prevent harm and outlines procedures for reporting and investigating workplace incidents.

Sector-specific regulations address unique risks in industries such as construction, mining, and oil and gas, with detailed rules on issues like scaffolding and mine ventilation. Enforcement is overseen by the Ministry of Public Administration, Labour and Social Security, with labor inspectors conducting inspections and enforcing compliance.

Challenges include keeping up with evolving regulations and enforcing them in a resource-limited environment, particularly within the informal economy. Employers are required to conduct risk assessments, manage various workplace hazards, and ensure protective measures like PPE are in place. Health surveillance and incident reporting are crucial for maintaining safety standards and improving workplace conditions.

Overall, while Angola has a structured regulatory framework for workplace safety, ongoing updates and effective enforcement are essential to address both traditional and emerging occupational health risks.

Dispute Resolution in Angola

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Angola's labor dispute resolution system includes specialized labor courts and arbitration panels. Labor courts, part of the judicial system, handle cases through a process of claim submission, conciliation, hearing, and appeals. Arbitration panels, established through agreements between employers and employees, operate outside the formal court system and handle disputes specified in the arbitration agreement.

The General Labor Law (Law No. 7/15) is the primary legal framework governing employment in Angola, supplemented by regulations from the Ministry of Public Administration, Labor and Social Security. Compliance audits and inspections by various government entities ensure adherence to labor laws, with the General Labor Inspectorate overseeing labor law compliance.

Reporting mechanisms for violations include internal company channels, government agencies like the General Labor Inspectorate and Tax Authorities, and the "Feito em Angola" whistleblowing channel. Legal protections for whistleblowers exist but are limited, with specific decrees providing some protection against retaliation.

Angola has ratified several International Labour Organization (ILO) conventions, including those against forced labor, child labor, and discrimination, and supports freedom of association and collective bargaining. These international standards are reflected in Angola's national labor laws, which prohibit forced labor and discrimination, set minimum working ages, and support unionization and collective bargaining.

Despite a robust legal framework, Angola faces challenges in enforcing these laws, particularly due to the informal labor sector and limited resources for labor inspections. Businesses in Angola must navigate both domestic laws and international labor standards, ensuring compliance and addressing risks in their operations and supply chains.

Cultural Considerations in Angola

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In Angolan workplaces, communication and negotiation are deeply influenced by cultural norms stemming from African traditions, Portuguese colonial history, and modern business practices. Key aspects include:

  • Indirect Communication: Angolans often communicate indirectly, especially with superiors, to show respect and avoid confrontation. Directness is more common among close colleagues or in urgent situations. Non-verbal cues like eye contact and body language are crucial for understanding the true intent behind words.

  • Formality and Hierarchy: Formality is prevalent, with a strong emphasis on using titles and structured meeting formats. However, informality can arise within familiar teams. Hierarchical structures dominate, with senior members making key decisions, reflecting the high power distance inherited from colonial times.

  • Relationship Building: Establishing strong, respectful relationships is vital, especially in negotiations. The concept of "Utu Okanikwa" highlights the importance of social harmony and interconnectedness.

  • Patience in Negotiations: Negotiations are typically lengthy, involving multiple stakeholders and a consultative approach to decision-making. Rushing the process is frowned upon.

  • Cultural Sensitivity: Understanding and respecting cultural norms, including appropriate dress and gift-giving practices, are essential for successful business interactions.

  • Statutory Holidays and Celebrations: Awareness of national and regional holidays is important for planning business operations and demonstrating cultural respect.

Overall, successful communication and negotiation in Angola require patience, respect for hierarchy, and a keen understanding of indirect communication cues and cultural nuances.

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