Indispensable Tips for doing Business In Angola

Luanda, Located in Angola, has been named the world’s most expensive city in the 2014 Cost of Living Ranking compiled by the human resources consulting firm, Mercer.

But how is this possible in a country that suffered a destructive and violent 27-year civil war, ending only in 2002, which crippled its infrastructure and decimated its ability to produce its own food.

The answer is simple, oil.

‘Black gold’ runs like water in Angola and unsurprisingly, its existence has attracted many foreign workers and officials who are looking to get a slice of the oil pie.

Due to this, offices and accommodation are in short supply and the expats are overloading the city with their demands. What they find when they get here is a city officially recognised as the most mind bogglingly expensive city in the world.

To understand what we are talking about, below we have listed the prices of everyday expenses in Luanda:

1 bedroom apartment: $6,600 per month

Pair of blue jeans: $242.81

Club sandwich and soda: $18.95

But there’s good news, the price of petrol is just $0.61 per liter, and the price is dropping.

Shiny new shopping malls and satellite cities of condominiums and bungalows are springing up to hasten Luanda into the 21st Century.

Expats are attracted by generous salary packages, free private education for their children, a driver and 4×4, and two business-class trips home each year.

No wonder Mercer, a leading firm of financial analysts, has put Luanda at the top of its annual expat cost-of-living survey more than once, as has the respected ECA International ranking system.

None of this, of course, is conducive to tourism. Unless you’re considering taking your entire life savings on Holiday with you however it is conducive for good business.

Anyway despite its luxurious nature Angola, with Luanda in particular, is a beautiful country with an abundance of opportunity and growth.

So should you find yourself doing business in this region of Africa, we have assembled a list of business tips and facts below to aid you in your travels:

  1. Angola was a Portuguese colony for more than 500 years. Therefore Portugese is the official spoken language.
  2. Angolan business negotiations typically move slowly. Most business deals are influenced by personal relationships, and Angolans will usually dedicate the entire first meeting to getting better acquainted with potential business partners.
  3. Visitors should always greet elders first, greetings may include a slight bow.
  4. Angolan businesspeople appreciate simple but high-quality products. Presents such as superior quality pens, a piece of porcelain, or, if the giver is foreign, a product from one’s home country all make excellent business gifts.
    1. However gifts emblazoned with company logos are viewed as convenient advertising and are avoided in business circles.
  1. Angolans expect that foreigners will have their business cards translated into Portuguese on one side.
  2. Angolans love sports and are happy to converse on the topics Football and basketball. Angola’s national men’s basketball team is consistently one of the top teams in Africa, competing regularly on the world stage.
  3. Men are expected not to eat with women and children. This may be an old way of thinking, especially in the new Westernised Angola. But should it happen, don’t be surprised.
  4. Many Angolans do not look each other in the eye while speaking.

So although Angola, and more specifically, Luanda may be pricey, the potential for huge business opportunities remain strong.  Use these helpful tips to ensure you harness those opportunities effectively without destroying the potential business contract before it has even begun.

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