2022 guidelines regulating expatriate quota
By Helen Ijewere, Nolands
Companies in Nigeria that wish to employ foreigner workers must apply for and process an Expatriate Quota Position (EQP) from the Nigerian Federal Ministry of Interior (FMI). The EQP is an allocation for the hiring of foreign staff that is granted to a Nigerian company.
The EQP is for an initial period of three years, and a renewal can be granted for two additional years. The maximum number of years for an EQP is 10 years.
The FMI via two public notices published on 24 January 2022 issued additional EQP guidelines.
Highlights of guidelines:
1. Permanent Until Reviewed status
All organisations granted EQPs on a Permanent Until Reviewed status (PUR) must submit clear copies of their letters of approval by 28 February 2022 to the Offce of the Deputy Director, Enforcement, Investigations and Inspection.
The penalty for failure to submit clear copies of EQP letters of approval by 28 February is immediate cancellation of the PUR facility.
This action enables the FMI to review and examine all PUR instruments issued from the inception of the PUR facility. The review will ensure that foreigners working in Nigeria are qualified for the EQP and have not exceeded the length of time for each PUR status.
2. Letter of introduction for company representatives
All companies with EQPs must send a letter to the FMI introducing their authorised company representatives (full-time staff and/ or external consultants). The letter of introduction must include:
- Full name of authorised representative
- Position in the company
- Offcial email address
- Offcial telephone number and alternate telephone number
- Mailing address of authorised representative
- Two copies of passport photograph
- Photocopy of offcial identification
3. Online filing of monthly returns on the utilisation of approved EQPs
All companies that use the services provided by the Citizenship & Business Department (CBD) of the FMI must submit returns online effective 24 January 2022. In addition, the returns must provide the National Identity Number (NIN) of all expatriates and their Nigerian understudies.
Manual submission of returns after 24 January 2022 will result in cancellation of the EQP.
4. Inspection of companies
The Offce of the Permanent Secretary of the FMI issued a second public notice stating that the CBD had commenced inspection exercises of organisations that applied for renewal of EQPs and additional slots for EQPs. These inspection exercises are to monitor compliance with EQP regulations.
5. Inspection fees
Mandatory inspection fees, determined by location, have been introduced for organisations slated for CBD inspection visits. The fees are:
i. NGN 150,000 for an out-of-state company inspections that requires a flight and overnight stay;
ii. NGN 80,000 for an in-state or out-of-state inspection that does not require a flight but needs overnight stay;
iii. NGN 45,000 for an in-state/ neighbouring state inspection where no overnight stay or flight is required.
The 2022 guidelines are overdue. Abuse and corruption have trailed the approval of EQPs for years. Strict implementation of these guidelines will strengthen compliance and transparency, which should contribute to the ease of doing business in Nigeria.
Helen E. IjewereGGI member firm
Advisory, Auditing & Accounting, Fiduciary & Estate Planning, Tax
More than 10 offices throughout Africa
T: +234 802 318 2843
Nolands is an international audit & advisory firm located in thirteen offices in all major centres in Africa. Nolands employs almost 200 people and is focused on providing the best possible solutions for its clients. The company prides itself on being “not ordinary” and on its ability to integrate services and respond rapidly to clients’ needs.
Helen E. Ijewere is currently the regional chair MEA of the Global Mobility Solutions Practice Group. She is a Director at Nolands Nigeria. Her areas of specialisation are global mobility solutions, tax, corporate governance, risk management, ethics, compliance and fraud. She joined the firm in January 2016 from private practice. She has a JD from the University of North Carolina School of Law, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, and a BA from Trinity College, Washington, DC.
Published: Global Mobility Solutions Newsletter, No. 01, Spring 2022 l Photo: Andrey Popov - stock.adobe.com