Thanks to its world-renowned diamond industry and fast-growing service, tourism and manufacturing sectors, Botswana is classed as an upper-middle-income country. The economy is one of the most successful in Africa, with close economic links to South Africa.
Botswana is an appealing country to expat investors. Relatively liberal economic policies and strong existing financial institutions in Botswana are seen to favour foreign investment. Botswana is also ranked among the least corrupt countries in the world, which suggests financial security when working here. Relatively low tax controls are another incentive for expats to do business here.
As the job market is growing, job openings in diverse sectors are available. Here is an introduction to the economic climate and the best ways to secure a job in Botswana.
Job market in Botswana
Botswana’s wealth of minerals and raw materials cannot be overlooked when discussing the job market. Most of the country's exports are in unmounted diamonds. Botswana is also home to the Orapa diamond mine – the world's largest diamond mine by area.
Botswana has experienced rapid growth in its ICT sector, driven by both public and private sector investment. This has led to an expansion in internet services, making it easier to do business in the country – as well as finding jobs within the information systems sector.
The country has a well-respected financial industry which attracts expats. The Botswana Stock Exchange performs well, and several international and local banks operate here.
The tourism industry is also thriving thanks to the country's immense biodiversity. Botswana is blessed with abundant wildlife, from lions and cheetahs to giraffe and antelope, as well as natural landscapes of wetlands and the semi-arid sandy savannah of the Kalahari Desert. Jobs in tourism hope to conserve this natural beauty while boosting the economy at the same time.
Finding a job in Botswana
Many expats relocate to Botswana with a job in hand, such as through an intra-company transfer. This is often the case when working in the financial industry or for a large multinational. Other expats drawn to Botswana may need to look for work.
For expat job seekers in Botswana, searching the internet is a good start. It’s advised to develop an up-to-date profile on popular networking websites like LinkedIn while looking for listings on job portals, such as Careers 24 and BotswaJob.com. Newspaper classifieds can also be useful. Alternatively, expats can go through a recruitment agency in order to guarantee finding a job in Botswana.
Prospective expats should also research the appropriate visas for Botswana that will allow them to work in the country.
Work culture in Botswana
English is commonly spoken in business and used in everyday life. Still, expats doing business in Botswana are encouraged to make an effort to use some basic phrases in the local language, Setswana.
Work culture and communication hierarchies are generally top-down. However, there is often collaboration and consultation between employers, managers and employees.
As across all spheres of life in Botswana, elders are treated with respect in the workplace.