Population 2.3 million
Area 581,730 km sq
Timezone GMT +2
Language English and Tswana
With a stable democracy, lower cost of living and open economy largely dependent on mining diamonds and tourism, Botswana is a draw for some expats and investors. Botswana gained independence from the UK in 1966, but remains a member of the Commonwealth and English is widely spoken.

Over half the population lives in urban areas. The capital city is Gaborone and other main towns including Maun, Lobatse and Francistown. The residential market has grown, alongside the commercial and industrial sectors, especially in the higher end. The Government welcomes foreign investment in freehold real estate, but there are heavy restrictions relating to tribal and state land, with a distinct system of land tenure and ownership. Non-citizens need Ministerial consent to hold land and it has been a topic of recent debate. Your estate agent will be able to advise.
Since 2019, Transfer duty changed to a 5% levy for citizens, or a citizen-owned company, and 30% for non-citizens. There is a duty threshold of BWP1million. This makes buying property more expensive for foreigners or non-residents.

Botswana has no exchange controls. While there is corporate and personal taxation, it is considered a relatively low, and straightforward, tax regime. Personal income tax rates are progressive up to 25% for individuals, with variations for residents and non-residents. Only Botswana sourced income is taxed and, like most other countries, you are considered resident if you stay longer than 183 days in a tax year.

Capital gains are treated as taxable income, subject to personal income tax. There is a capital transfer tax for inheritance and there is a Withholding Tax. Check details with a tax specialist.

Check entry requirements with the embassy before travelling, but generally British passport holders can stay up to 90 days without a visa. Any longer and you will need to apply for an extension with a residence or work permit. Botswana does operate a residency by investment programme. Fees, terms & conditions apply.

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