Namibia Country Profile
Snapshot of the Namibia Country Profile
Namibia is often highlighted as an example of successful democratisation and corruption control on a continent infamous for its fragile political climate. Namibia is economically stable, and the market economy functions reasonably well. The private sector is generally viewed as the backbone of the economy and as a catalyst of growth. This has led the government to pass business-friendly legislation, and several observers assess the business climate in Namibia as attractive compared to some of its neighbours. The country has considerable growth potential due to mineral wealth and its geographical position between two major economies in the region. Nevertheless, corruption continues to be a problematic factor for doing business, and companies still consider the occurrence of irregular payments and bribes in Namibia as fairly common.
Positive developments in relation to corruption and investment:
- Observers generally agree that Namibia's legal and institutional framework for curbing corruption is adequate and among the most functional in the region.
- The regulatory environment in Namibia is generally viewed as business-friendly and uncomplicated, and the Namibian government's commitment to creating a liberal regulatory regime has made the country one of the least bureaucratic places to do business in the region.
- During 2010, a number of high-ranking figures were arrested and, in some cases, imprisoned on corruption charges.
- In 2012, a new Public Procurement Bill was presented for the accession. The Bill aims to establish a Public Procurement Policy Office, a Central Procurement Board, Public Procurement Entities, and an Independent Review Panel, which will contribute to a development of a more transparent public procurement process in Namibia.
Risks of corruption:
- Some companies operating in Namibia report that interaction with tax officials occasionally entails payments of bribes.
- Companies should note that cumbersome and costly customs procedures are frequently associated with high levels of corruption in the form of facilitation payments made to expedite procedures.
- The Namibian extractive industry, especially the diamond sector, is allegedly a hot spot for corruption and money laundering.
- There has been criticism that the investigations in major corruption deals fuelled in business-government relations are dragged out and tend to focus on lower-level officials.
- The Namibian judicial system is particularly deficient, inconsistent in contract enforcement and vulnerable to political interference and pervasive corruption.
Namibia Corruption News
- The Namibian:
'Ex-NBC staffers admit TV licence corruption', 14 Sep. 2012
- New Era:
'Plenty of corruption occurs below the radar', 28 Jun. 2012
- Namibia Economist:
'Money laundering on the increase?', 05 Apr. 2012
- New Era:
'PM welcomes war on illicit outflows', 01 Feb. 2012
'Namibia lacks political will to fight graft, says rights activist', 08 Dec. 2011
- New Era:
'Education should take lead against corruption', 01 Aug. 2011
Publication date: January 2013
Data verified by Global Advice Network