Namibia: Doing business and staying in touch
Doing Business in Namibia
English is the official language in Namibia but a grasp of Afrikaans is an advantage. Business etiquette is quite formal and you're advised to address the other person as Sir/Ma'am or Mr/Ms/Mrs (and their last name). Greetings involve a handshake and friendly inquiries after general wellbeing. Business meetings usually start late, but foreigners are advised to be punctual.
Business attire is smart and subdued – a shirt and a tie are acceptable in most situations for men, while a smart dress or a shirt with trousers are ideal for women.
The best times for business meetings are February to May and September to November. Avoid December and January as these are the main holiday periods.
Namibia's economy mainly revolves around minerals, particularly uranium and zinc, and to a lesser extent gold, copper, lead, silver and tungsten. After mining, tourism is the second-largest contributor to Namibia's GDP, as the country's natural beauty, cultural diversity and political stability attract over 1.5 million tourists a year.
Namibia also has a thriving fishing industry, thanks to its 1,572km (977mi) long coastline. Hake, mackerel, crab, lobster, oysters, tuna and other prized seafood are the main exports.
US$12.37 billion (2019).
Minerals and fish.
Refined petroleum, machinery, vehicles.
Main trading partners
South Africa, Zambia, China, Botswana, Belgium.
Keeping in Touch in Namibia
Namibia has an excellent fixed-line telephone network run by Telecom Namibia.
Namibia has excellent mobile coverage in cities and towns, but coverage can be sporadic outside urban areas. Buying a local sim card is the best way to avoid paying roaming charges. MTC (www.mtc.com.na), the country's leading mobile provider, is recommended.
Most hotels provide Wi-Fi.
Posts to Europe take four days to two weeks.