In a report published on CNN in June 2016, a quote was published by a fashion entrepreneur that stated that now is a very good time to invest in Nigeria. Why?
Because due to the current economic situation in the country, the Nigerian currency’s value is significantly low as compared to the American Dollar. For US companies who export their products manufactured in Nigeria, this means that you now pay lower wages, which mean a higher profit.
Moreover apart from that, Nigeria has a wealth of resources that remain unexplored. With a population of approximately 120 million, Nigeria has promising prospects for business men and entrepreneurs. With its low cost labor, free market economy, significant investment incentive, and developing infrastructure. Nigeria is a good place for businessmen to be looking into.
If you’re planning to travel to Nigeria with a business plan in mind, you’re going to need a Nigerian Business Visa. Outlined below is a guide that explains everything that is required for procuring a Nigerian Visa for a US citizen.
What are the requirements for the issuance of a Nigerian Business Visa?
You must meet the following Nigerian business visa requirements to be eligible for the business visa in Nigeria:
- You must be a businessman or an investor
- You must give proof that you have sufficient funds to support you during your stay in Nigeria. For this you can submit your most recent account statement.
- You must prove your intention of departure by purchasing a valid return ticket.
- You must accept full Immigration responsibility (IR)
What is the Validity of a Nigerian Business Visa?
A Nigerian Business visa validity lasts for up to 90 days. However it may be extended. Note that you cannot pursue employment under the Nigerian business visa.
How do apply for the Business Visa?
You can apply for your visa online. Nigerian embassy accepts online applications on their website. You can start filling your application here.
When you’re filling out the application be sure to select the correct consulate that’s applicable to you, because you will need to send your documents and fee to the consulate. For your application to be considered you need to send a money order or a cheque to the consulate as processing fee. Regular processing fee is $30. If you want an expedited delivery (3 days) for your visa then your fee will be $65. You can also pay using your credit card, in that case attach the receipt for the payment with your application.
A proof of direct payment is needed for the application to be considered.
Once you’ve submitted the application and transferred the money. You’ll get an acknowledgement email from the embassy in 1-2 business days. Once you get that email, send all your documents to your designated Consulate.
What documents do I Send to the Consulate?
You’ll need to send the following document to the consulate once you get an acknowledgement that your application has been received.
You will need to send a valid passport that’s at least valid for more than 6 months of your stay in Nigeria. The passport should have at least one blank page that the visa can be stamped on. Pages added on the back on the passport as extension will not be considered.
You need to send 2×2 colored, passport size photos on a white background along with the documents. The photographs must be clear and they must be taken with a front view.
Letter of Invitation
If you have a relative or friend in Nigeria who has invited you over, you’re going to need a letter of invitation from your friend. If your friend is a native of Nigeria, he will need to attach a copy of his passport along with the letter. If he’s not a Nigerian Native,but he is a resident of Nigeria he will need to attach the copy of his resident permits along with the information page on his passport.
The invitation letter must also outline the length of your stay, the place that you’ll be staying in along with your contact information. The letter should also state the following, “We hereby accept full immigration responsibility”.
You also need to carry a business letter from your company on the company letterhead, introducing you as an employee, stating your position In the company, and clearly outlining the purpose of your visit to Nigeria. Furthermore, the letter should also mention clearly who is sponsoring the round trip to Nigeria, it should also provide your contact details in Nigeria.
Proof of Departure
As mentioned earlier, in order to be eligible for the Nigerian Visa you need to provide the proof of Departure from the country after your purpose is served. For this purpose, you must send a copy of your flight itinerary of the round trip to Nigeria to your consulate. The itinerary may be generated by your travel agent, or it may be procured directly from the airport.
If you’re planning to stay at a hotel during your visit, you need to make your bookings in advance and attach your reservation details along with your application. If you planning to stay at more than one hotel, attach the details of all the places that you’ll be staying in during your stay.
You also need to produce an international vaccination certificate against yellow fever.
Once you have all your documents ready, you have to ship them out to your consulate. Note that the process may vary slightly in New York, Atlanta, and Washington. For details on those, you can consult the respective consulates websites. For all the other states, this is all the information that you need.
After you have submitted the documents, the consulate will process your documents and you will be called for an interview. Usually it takes around 3 weeks for visa to get processed however the days vary slightly among different consulates.
Once you’ve submitted your documents you’ve done your part. If all goes planned, you’ll have you visa within a few weeks. Good luck!