The practical aspects of doing business in Nigeria - The Julius Berger story

Alexander Bauer, Regional Manager, Julius Berger Nigeria Plc  

With over 50 years of experience in Nigeria, how did Julius Berger Nigeria Plc  become Nigeria’s leading construction company and one of the country’s largest private employers? What are some of their landmark achievements in construction? And what's the company's outlook for 2021?

Find out in the brief presented by Alexander Bauer, Regional Manager, Julius Berger Nigeria Plc at the online event organised by AHK Nigeria and CT Executive Search.




The practical aspects of doing business in Nigeria The BASF story

Dr. Jean-Marc Ricca, Managing Director, Country Cluster West Africa, BASF West Africa Limited

How did BASF successfully set up operations in Nigeria? What were some of the hurdles faced, and how did they overcome it? 

Find out in the brief presented by Dr. Jean-Marc Ricca, Managing Director, Country Cluster West Africa, BASF West Africa Limited at the online event organised by AHK Nigeria and CT Executive Search.



Dr. Alexander Brexendorff, Founder of B&A and Managing Partner of MENA LEGAL, Tiwalola Osazuwa, Senior Associate, ǼLEX


What legal hurdles do you need to overcome to successfully set up a business in Nigeria? 




Investing in Nigeria

CT Executive Search Update

PwC has projected Nigeria among the top world economies in 2050 ahead of Italy, Canada, South Korea, Spain, Netherlands, Australia, and others.

  1. Income tax relief for a period of three years and which can be extended for a period of one year and thereafter another one year or for one period of two years – Pioneer Status Incentives.
  2. Zero Import Duty: Zero percent import duty tariffs (custom, excise and value added) for import of agricultural equipment and agro-processing equipment.
  3. Exemption of interest from tax on loans granted to agricultural activities.
  4. Avoidance of double taxation agreement which eliminates double taxation with respect on income and capital gains.

These are just some of the reasons to invest in Nigeria. So what sectors should you be considering as an investor? Read the CT Executive brief to find out more.


Indonesia Issues Latest COVID-19 Immigration Measures

Dezan Shira & Associates

  • On October 1, 2020, Indonesia issued Reg 26/2020, which relaxes certain criteria for foreign visitors to be able to enter Indonesia.
  • Under Reg 26/2020, visit visa holders and limited stay visa holders are now allowed to enter Indonesia, provided they adhere to strict health measures such as presenting a negative COVID-19 certificate.
  • Foreign visitors must also have sufficient health insurance coverage as well as funding (at least US$10,000) to stay in the country.



The Practical Guide to Running a Small Business in Russia as a Foreigner

Article by Marcus Hudson for Expatriant 

Running a small business in Russia as a foreigner can be quite intimidating if you don’t know what you are doing. But, did you know that Russia is one of the easiest countries in the world to do business? The World Bank puts Russia ahead of Japan and Switzerland at number 28 in the world for ease of doing business.



  • Who Can Start a Small Business in Russia
  • Small Business Opportunities in Russia
  • Tax Structures for Russian Small Businesses
  • Operating a Small Business in Russia



India’s New Labor Codes: A Brief Note for Foreign Investors

Dezan Shira & Associates

  • India’s new labor codes make hiring decisions more flexible for companies, reduce the labor compliance burden, and ensure that labor unions give 60 days’ strike notice. 

India’s parliament approved three new labor codes on September 22-23, in a historic move to consolidate the country’s labor legislation and compliance norms. The codes are – Industrial Relations Code Bill, 2020; Code on Social Security Bill, 2020; and the Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions Code Bill, 2020.

The respective bills bring gig workers and inter-state migrant workers into the ambit of social security for the first time.



Online event: Doing Business In Nigeria - Opportunities, Challenges And Finding The Right Talent

Online event organized by the Delegation of German Industry and Commerce in Nigeria (AHK Nigeria), and CT Executive Search

Should you be investing in Nigeria? And if so, what should you look out for?

Join us on Thursday, 29 October as we take a look at the prospects of doing business in Nigeria.

Date: 29 October 2020

Time: 1:00 pm – 2:30 pm CET|1:00 pm – 2:30 pm WAT

This is an online event organized by the Delegation of German Industry and Commerce in Nigeria (AHK Nigeria), and CT Executive Search.

We will be looking at the practical, hands-on aspects of doing business in Nigeria. This event is brought to you by the people actually doing business there.

Event Programme

Register here.


Rapid Development Provides Opportunities

Christian Tegethoff, Managing Director, CT Executive Search

How do you support companies in Africa?

How does CT Executive Search operate on the continent? We recruit into all kinds of C-level roles in Africa – for instance, Country Managers, Plant Managers, and senior administrative staff. We also recruit for small units - for example, for representative and sales offices.

In addition, we support companies in the market entry phase by placing external local specialists. These are local top managers who know the respective industry well from their own experience - for example due to previous work at a competitor company, a distributor or in the purchasing department of a potential target customer.



Nigeria: Understand the Landscape Before Large Investments

Mark Essien, CEO, Hotels.ng

As a tech entrepreneur and someone who made the Forbes list of 30 youngest entrepreneurs in Africa, do you see Nigeria becoming the next tech/IT hub aka the next Silicon Valley? 

It may not be the next Silicon Valley, but it will likely be the most important place for technology in Africa, and the importance will continue to grow.

The country is very large, there is a lot of oil wealth, and now there is a strong migration to information tech, so we should expect to really see Nigeria become one of the central technology spots in Africa.



There are no Blueprints

Katharina Felgenhauer, Delegate, AHK Nigeria

How invested is Germany in Nigeria? How many German companies are active in the country?

We estimate that there are around 100 German companies in Nigeria. This includes all forms of presence - many of these companies have sales offices, others have their own production facilities, and still, others work with Nigerian partners.

The companies come from practically all industries. The construction, consumer goods, infrastructure, and energy sectors are particularly well represented. The Nigerian oil industry naturally attracts its suppliers.



Online event: Agile Scenario Planning – Opportunities For Investment & Expansion In Europe

An online event organized by CT Executive Search and Nordic Minds

Join us on Wednesday, 30 September as we take a look at the current opportunities for investment, expansion, and recruitment in Europe.

Date: 30 September 2020

Time: 9:30 - 11:00 am CET (GMT+2)

           10:30 am – 12:00 noon GMT+3

Participation: Free of charge


Tadzio Schilling, Chief Executive Officer, Association of European Businesses (AEB)

Edward Blomstedt, Chief Executive Officer, AirFaas

Christian Tegethoff, Managing Director, CT Executive Search

Marcus Honkanen, Managing Partner, Nordic Minds

The event programme is available online.

Please register here for the event.


New chapter in the way we work - the future of the home office

bnt attorneys in CEE

Due to the situation caused by the coronavirus many companies have introduced the home office to enable working from home.

Because of the epidemiological situation, in March 2020 working from home – the home office – became daily routine in the workplace. However, its terms and rules are not regulated by the applicable Hungarian Labour Code. During the coronavirus state of emergency, the home office was introduced for many workplaces. Moreover, current trends show that companies want to take permanent advantage of the flexibility of working from home.



The Guide to Employment Permits for Foreign Workers in Indonesia

Dezan Shira & Associates

  • There are two main legal options for foreign investors in setting up in Indonesia: establishing a foreign investment company (PT PMA) or a representative office (RO).
  • Opening an RO is the fastest and simplest way of establishing a legal entity in the country, although ROs are not allowed to engage in any commercial activities.
  • Establishing a PT PMA will enable investors to access Special financial and non-financial incentives, particularly in pioneer industries.
  • Investors should assess their specific needs carefully before deciding which corporate structure to operate from.

Despite improvements in the Ease of Doing Business report, Indonesia continues to be challenging for foreign investors.



Should work in the same position for the same employer pay the same salary, regardless of whether the employee lives and works in Prague, in a large regional city, or in a tiny backwater?

bnt attorneys in CEE

In a recent decision, the Czech Supreme Court concluded that the variety of socioeconomic conditions across the various regions of the Czech Republic must not have any bearing on employers’ pay scales.

The application and interpretation of Czech Labor Law are relatively settled disciplines, but a recent Supreme Court decision has now caused some uproar. Judgment 21 Cdo 3955/2018 of 20 July 2020 concerns the issue of fair compensation and has solid chances of becoming a regular nightmare for quite a few employers.



Guide to Employment Permits in Malaysia for Foreign Workers

Dezan Shira & Associates

  • There are three types of employment permits foreign workers can apply for in Malaysia. These are the employment pass, temporary employment pass, and the professional visit pass.
  • The type of work permit issued by the government depends on the skill of the foreign applicant, as well as the remaining quota for that sector.
  • It is the duty of the Malaysian company to apply for the work permit on behalf of the foreign applicant.

The Malaysian government generally issues three different types of work permits...



The Russian labour market: rapid recovery or long depression?

Christian Tegethoff, Managing Director, CT Executive Search

Corona, corona - the endless topic had major consequences for the Russian labour market and the purchasing power of the Russian population. Russia reacted relatively late to the pandemic, but then imposed a hard lockdown (at least in the capital). The rather bumpy introduction of the restrictions and many regional special regulations have caused some confusion among companies and employees.

How have the lockdown, travel restrictions, and the global economic slump concretely affected the Russian labour market? These questions are not easy to answer because the official figures available only partly reflect the actual situation.

The official unemployment rate in June was 6.1 percent. Although this meant that an increase was fixed (unemployment rate at the end of 2019 amounted to 4.6 percent), according to many market observers, actual unemployment is likely to be significantly higher.




CT Executive Search Updates

How did Romania react to the pandemic? What government measures were taken? And what is the outlook for the future in terms of economic development and the labour market?

These are the questions that were tackled head on at the online event on the 26 of August, 2020. The event was held by CT Executive Search, Elite Searchers and STALFORT Legal. Tax. Audit. and supported by AHK Romania.

Christian Tegethoff, Managing Director, CT Executive Search talked about executive recruitment both at the local and expatriate levels. In his presentation, he spoke about the current and future demand for top level executives, as well as management styles and recruitment preferences in Romania.



Singapore Increases Qualifying Salaries for Foreign Employees


Dezan Shira & Associates

  • Singapore’s Ministry of Manpower has increased the minimum qualifying salaries needed for foreign workers to receive the Employment Pass (EP) and S Pass permits.
  • The ministry has also increased the qualifying salary for foreign workers in the financial sector – the first time the ministry has set a sector-specific qualifying salary.
  • These measures were initiated to encourage businesses to employ local workers.
  • Businesses must advertise new job positions on the MyCareersFuture.sg website for a period of 28 days to make them known to local job seekers.

On August 27, 2020, Singapore’s Ministry of Manpower (MoM) has increased the minimum qualifying salaries for foreign workers to receive the Employment Pass (EP) and S Pass work permits.



Companies are resuming their expansion plans

Semyon Cherkasov, Director, CT Executive Search

How did the corona-induced state regulations affect your clients’ businesses in Russia? Which operational adjustments were common?

Most manufacturing companies had to face similar issues all around Russia. They have to follow the rules of Rospotrebnadzor (Federal Service for Surveillance on Consumer Rights Protection and Human Wellbeing) and other organizations regarding the security restrictions.

Practically all companies shifted their organization to remote work conditions. For most businesses, this called for significant efforts, especially with regards to IT and other critical infrastructure. The employees had to quickly adapt to a new way of collaboration, management and staff alike. 



That was tough!

Jens Palmen, Managing Director, Schattdecor Russia

How did the state and government’s measures to prevent the spread of the Coronavirus affect Schattdecor‘s business operations in Russia?

The restrictions have of course had a massive impact on Schattdecor. The plants had to be closed, and home office workplaces had to be set up for all office workers. In total, our production stood still for about two weeks.

Unfortunately, despite all our efforts, we did not manage to be classified as a systemically important company – like all of our competitors and 99% of the furniture industry. Only a good number of our wood-based material customers were recognized as systemically relevant and were able to continue production, provided that this made sense at all in view of the demand situation.



What are India’s Latest Guidelines on International Travel?

Dezan Shira & Associates

  • New rules for passengers traveling to India in effect from August 8.
  • Transport air bubbles currently in place with US, France, Germany, UK, UAE, and Qatar; agreement with Maldives has come into effect.
  • Suspension of Indian international air flight operations extended till August 31, 2020.
  • As of August 18, India is negotiating with 13 more countries to establish air travel arrangements.
  • Foreign nationals holding J-1 and J-1X visas are now permitted to enter India.
  • New standard operating protocol announced August 22 for non-scheduled commercial flights under the repatriation scheme, Vande Bharat Mission, and Air Transport Bubble Agreements.



Vietnam’s Entry Procedures for Foreign Employees amid the Pandemic

Dezan Shira & Associates

  • Vietnam suspended the entry of all foreign visitors from March 22 and subsequently suspended all international flights.
  • However, it has been allowing diplomats, officials, foreign investors, experts, skilled workers, and students to enter the country with special entry permits.
  • All travelers, however, will be subject to a 14-day quarantine at a centralized government facility or a designated hotel.
  • We recommend employers use a reputable professional firm to deal with the intricacies and administrative procedures of securing entry of their foreign employees.

Vietnam’s government, however, has allowed diplomats, officials, business experts, managers, highly skilled workers, and students to come to Vietnam provided they meet the necessary requirements.



The future of Africa’s independent automotive aftermarkets

africon GmbH

africon recently presented at Messe Frankfurt Middle East: Automechanika Dubai’s webinar titled “Africa’s independent aftermarket (IAM) – a look at the current situation and future potential”.

In a webinar poll, they asked the 237 attendees from 65 countries if the African automotive aftermarkets will play an important role for their business in a post-COVID future. In total, more than 70% of the participants “strongly agreed” or “agreed”. 



Beijing Tightens Social Insurance Filing Services by Third-Party HR Agency


Dezan Shira & Associates

  • Beijing has released a new regulation restricting third-party HR agencies from filing social insurance in Beijing for employees of non-Beijing resident companies.
  • Companies that have employees based in Beijing but do not have a registered entity or branch in the capital and entrust a third-party agency to file social security for their Beijing-based staff need to find alternative solutions as soon as possible before the end of the grace period granted by the government – in late September.
  • Companies must take the regulation seriously to avoid incompliance and the adverse consequences so caused, such as being blacklisted, fined by the government, or being sued by affected employees, etc.

Effective from July 5, 2020, all labor dispatch companies and HR service companies (hereafter referred to as ‘HR agencies’) registered in Beijing are required to report part of the employees’ labor contract information when registering new employees with the Beijing Social Security Bureau for the administration of social insurance, according to the Notice Concerning Several Issues on Participation of Labor Dispatch companies and HR Service Companies in Social Insurance Scheme issued by the Beijing Social Security Fund Management Center on June 30, 2020.