Last updated on: September 19th, 2022
The Labour Law in Angola is regulated mainly by the General Labor Law of 1981. The Law governs the terms and conditions of employment such as working hours, holidays and rest periods, wages, overtime, employment relationships. The other acts that govern employment relationships are Presidential Decree on Regulation of the National Holidays Law, Local and National Celebration dates (No. 156/12 of 29 June 2012), Presidential Decree on Maternity Protection (No. 8/11of 7 January 2011), etc.
Hours & Pay Regulations
Normal Working Hours
Working time of an employee is considered as the time from when an employee begins his/her work and until the employee is carrying out his/her tasks.
An employee can work a maximum of 44 ordinary hours in a week. The employee’s daily work hours cannot exceed 8 hours per day. The weekly limit may be extended to 54 hours for shift, modular, or variable working hours, for example where work is intermittent or requires the mere presence of the employee.
The duration of part-time work cannot be less than 5 hours a day not including overtime.
The daily working hour limit may also be extended to 9 hours a day not including overtime when the work is intermittent or requires the sole presence of the employee, and the employer limits the working week to five consecutive days. The workweek generally extends for 5.5 days i.e from Monday to half Saturday.
The daily working hour limit may also be extended to 10 hours a day not including overtime when the work is intermittent or requires the sole presence of the employee and the employer adopts shift, modular, or variable working hours.
Rotational Shift – The daily working hour limit may also be extended to 12 hours a day, not including overtime for rotational work timetables of up to 4 weeks of consecutive work followed by an equal period of rest.
The maximum limits of normal, daily, and weekly work periods can be reduced by collective agreement or by joint order of the Ministers. Art 95 of General Labor Law (No. 7/15 of 15 June 2015).
Shift work can be fixed or rotating shifts. Rotating shifts are those in which employees are subject to variations in time resulting from working on all provided shifts. The working hour of each shift shall not exceed the maximum limit of normal working hours i.e. 8 hours a day.
In cases where due to the nature of work, the normal working hours of 8 hours cannot be practiced, the duration of the working hours can be arranged in a manner that the maximum weekly working hours cannot exceed 56 hours in any week in a reference period of 3 weeks.
Pay – If an employee works in a rotating shift, the employee is entitled to a premium of 20% of the basic salary for large companies, 15% for small companies, and 5% for micro-companies which is payable when the employee is working in such shift work. The remuneration includes extra pay for night employees and compensation for variations in time and rests that the employee is entitled to.
If the work schedule consists of two shifts, fixed or rotating schedules, or partially overlapping or lagged, the employee is not entitled to any additional remuneration, except in circumstances where such condition is provided in the collective agreement.
Change of shifts – An employer can change or rotate the shift of an employee only after the employee’s weekly rest day. Art 99 – 101 of General Labor Law (No. 7/15 of 15 June 2015).
The employer must keep a register of overtime work where each day is recorded and also the aggregation of overtime work is made weekly per employee. The record may be subject to a model approved by the Minister responsible for Labor, which can impose the inclusion of other elements. The record must be presented to the General Labor Inspectorate whenever required. Art 118 of General Labor Law (No. 7/15 of 15 June 2015).
Work performed over and above the working limit is called overtime work. The maximum overtime duration is fixed as follows:
- 2 hours a day
- 40 hours a month; and
- 200 hours a year.
Employees who perform overtime work are entitled to pay in the below manner:
- An employee shall be paid an additional 50% on the normal hourly salary for large companies, 30% for medium-sized companies, 20% for small companies, and 10% for micro-companies for a maximum limit of 30 hours of overtime work per month; and
- An employee shall be paid an additional 75% on the normal hourly salary for large companies, 145% for medium-sized companies, 20% for small companies, and 10% for micro-companies for each hour of overtime work performed over and above 30 (from the 31st hour) hours of overtime per month.
Overtime pay is calculated as per the below conditions:
- Overtime work performed is for less than 15 minutes, no payment at overtime rate has to be made.
- Overtime work performed for more than 15 minutes and less than 44 minutes will be counted as half an hour of work for overtime pay purposes.
- Overtime work performed between 45 minutes to 60 minutes is considered as one hour for overtime pay purposes.
- For the purposes of payment of overtime work, the day or half-day of rest weekly supplement is considered a normal working day.
Art 115 – 117 of General Labor Law (No. 7/15 of 15 June 2015).
Night work is defined as the period between 8:00 pm and 6:00 am of the following day or any work including at least 3 working hours within that period. The normal period of night work cannot exceed 10 hours per day.
Pay – Employees are entitled to additional remuneration of 20 % on the regular salary for work performed at night in large companies, 15% in medium-sized companies, 10% for small businesses, and 5% for employees in micro-companies.
The additional compensation due to an employee for performing work at night can also be replaced by a reduction of working time at night, but this shall be arranged in such a manner that this arrangement shall not affect the regular activities of the workplace. Art 110 – 112 of General Labor Law (No. 7/15 of 15 June 2015).
Employees are entitled to an unpaid break of not less than 45 minutes and not more than 90 minutes for meal or rest after working for 5 or more consecutive hours. The break duration is 45 minutes if the workplace has a cafeteria that provides meals to the employees or 90 minutes if there is no provision of a cafeteria at the workplace. By means of collective bargaining agreements, parties may establish breaks over 2 hours or other duration deemed relevant.
In the case of rotating shifts, the rest and meal intervals are 30 minutes, which is regarded as working time in cases where the employee is not allowed to be absent from the workplace. Art 96 and 101 of General Labor Law (No. 7/15 of 15 June 2015).
An employee is entitled to an interval of rest between the end of a workday and the beginning of the next workday of not less than 10 hours. Art 96(4) of General Labor Law (No. 7/15 of 15 June 2015).
Employees are entitled to one full rest day a week, which, as a rule, must be a Sunday. The weekly rest period cannot be shorter than 24 consecutive hours, which normally starts at midnight on the relevant rest day.
In the case of shift work, weekly rest counts from the end of the shift and must last for 24 hours. The weekly day of rest can be moved to another day of the week when the employee performs works of continuous nature.
Complimentary weekly rest day – An employee is also entitled to half-day of complementary rest which shall be granted either half-day preceding or following the rest day of an employee.
Work On Rest Days
An employee who works for at least 3 hours on a weekly rest day is entitled to additional remuneration of 75% on the normal salary for the hours worked. In case of work on a complimentary rest day, an employee shall receive payment at the overtime rate for the work performed, which can either be 50% or 75% depending upon whether the additional work performed on the complimentary rest day is within the 30 hours overtime limit or beyond.
An employee who performs work on a weekly rest day is entitled to half a day off from work in the following week if he/she has worked less than 4 hours on the weekly rest day. In case, an employee has worked equal to or more than 4 hours, he/she is entitled to full-day rest from the work. This is in addition to the 75% on the normal salary for the hours worked. Art 119 – 125 and 117(5) of General Labor Law (No. 7/15 of 15 June 2015).
Employees are entitled to the following 11 public holidays in Angola:
- Jan. 1, New Year’s Day
- Feb. 4, Liberation Movement Day
- March 8, International Women’s Day
- Carnival (no fixed date)
- Easter (no fixed date)
- April 4, Peace Day
- May 1, Labor Day
- Sept. 17, National Heroes Day
- Nov. 2, Memorial Day
- Nov. 11, Independence Day
- Dec. 25, Christmas
Below are national celebration days, however, these days are considered as part of normal working days –
- Colonial Repression Martyrs’ Day (January 04),
- Angolan Women Day (March 02),
- Expansion of Armed Struggle for National Liberation Day (March 15),
- Angolan Youth Day (April 14),
- Africa Day (May 25),
- International Children’s Day (June 01),
- International Human Rights Day (December 10)
When a national holiday falls on Tuesday or Thursday, employees will be entitled to a day off on the preceding working day or on the day immediately following, that is Monday or Friday, respectively. The suspension of work on the days referred here gives rise to the so-called “Bridge”.
In the week before the bridge, one and a half hours per day is added to the normal working hours.
Pay for Work on Holiday – Employees who are required to work on a public holiday are entitled to double pay plus a compensatory day of rest. Presidential Decree on Regulation of the National Holidays Law, Local and National Celebration dates (No. 156/12 of 29 June 2012), Art 129 of General Labor Law (No. 7/15 of 15 June 2015),
The worker has the right, in each calendar year, to a period of paid vacation. An employee who has completed one year of employment with an employer is entitled to paid vacation for a period of 22 days. This period of leave is exclusive of weekends, compensatory rest days, and public holidays. In the first year of employment, annual vacation accrues at the rate of 2 days for each month of employment with the employer, up to a minimum of 6 working days of annual vacation in that particular year ( not more than 6 days can be accrued per month).
The employee is entitled to vacation on the 1st of January of each year and must take the mentioned vacation on or before the 31st of December of the same year. Exceptionally and at the request of the employee, or for reasons relating to the employer, the employer may authorize the vacation in question to be taken after December, but never after 31 March of the year following the year in which it was to be taken.
In the first year of employment with the employer, the employee cannot take a vacation. The right to vacation related to the work performed this year is acquired on the 1st of January of the following year and can be taken from the moment when six months of effective work are completed.
Female employees who have children under the age of 14 are entitled to increased vacation by one day for each child.
Part-time employees are entitled to annual vacation at the rate of 2 days per month. Fixed-term contract employees whose employment period (or renewal) does not exceed one year are entitled to 2 days of annual vacation per month. Disabled workers are entitled to 5 additional days of annual leave.
Holiday Plan – A holiday plan shall be organized in each workplace, in which all of the employees are included, with an indication of the start and end dates of the respective holiday period of holidays.
Accumulation of Vacation – Generally, an employee is not entitled to accumulate a vacation period, but employees who have family members living abroad can accumulate vacation time for a period of up to 2 or 3 years. Accumulation of vacation can also be done via an agreement between the employer and the employee, in case the employee wishes to spend their vacation abroad.
An employer who does not allow an employee to enjoy his annual vacation shall become entitled to pay double the remuneration for the amount of unused vacation and the employee shall be allowed to take the vacation before the end of the first quarter of the following year.
Annual Vacation Pay – An employee is entitled to full wages for the entire vacation period along with any other benefits that he/she might have accumulated during the year. Employees are also entitled to a bonus amount equal to 50% of the monthly salary is paid in addition to an employee. The payment is done before the beginning of the vacation period.
Sickness during annual vacation – If an employee falls sick during annual vacation, his/her vacation is suspended for a period of 5 business days if the employer is informed immediately about the situation. In such cases, it is the employer’s obligation to schedule when the employee should take the rest of the annual vacation.
Vacation in case of suspension of contract – An employee whose employment contract is suspended before he/she could take the vacation due in the year of suspension, because of reasons not related to the employee, he/she is entitled to the corresponding salary for the vacation period not taken.
Vacation in case of termination of the contract – In case of termination of employment, an employee is entitled to receive remuneration for a vacation period not taken by the employee in the year of termination, calculated at the rate of 2 days for each month of employment from January 1 until the date of termination. Art 129 – 140 and 252 of General Labor Law (No. 7/15 of 15 June 2015).
Effective January 1, 2022, the minimum wage is 32,181.15 kwanza per month.
An employee is entitled to take off from work in case of illness on the condition that he/she provides a medical certificate as proof for absence from work.
Employees shall be paid for the first 2 months at the rate of 100% of the normal salary and 50% of the salary between the third and 12th month in the case of large companies. In medium companies, employers shall pay 50% of the normal salary for 90 days, a post that the employment agreement is no longer valid if the employee’s illness is continued. Art 149 of General Labor Law (No. 7/15 of 15 June 2015).
A female employee is entitled to 3 months of unpaid leave. The leave can start 4 weeks before the expected date of delivery and 9 weeks of maternity leave can be taken after the birth of the child. The leave is paid by the social security supplemented by the employer, if necessary.
In the case of abortion, stillbirth, or death of the newborn child, the female employee is entitled to unpaid leave for 6 weeks calculated from the date of occurrence of such event. In case of multiple births, the postnatal leave for an employee is increased by a period of 4 weeks. If the birth takes place after the expected date of delivery, the period of leave is extended by the necessary period to last at least 9 weeks after the birth of the child.
After the maternity leave ends, a female employee can be provided another 4 weeks of supplementary period of leave to take care of the child. This leave is unpaid and can only be availed via an agreement with the employer.
Breastfeeding break – A female employee is entitled to two paid periods of 30 minutes each for breastfeeding when the child during the working hours of the employee is within the workplace or in the employer’s nursery school. In case, the child is not present within the workplace, the employer can provide a break for 1 hour, or the employee and the employer can enter into an agreement for reduced daily normal working hours for a period of up to 12 months. §5-7 of the Presidential Decree on Maternity Protection (No. 8/11of 7 January 2011), Art 246 – 247 of General Labor Law (No. 7/15 of 15 June 2015).
An employee is entitled to one day of paid leave at the time of the birth of his child. Art 145 of General Labor Law (No. 7/15 of 15 June 2015).
An employee is entitled to unpaid leave for a period of 60 days for education or training, but such leave can be denied by the employer if any of the following conditions are applicable to the employee –
- The employee was given adequate training for the same purpose in the last 24 months;
- The employer has less than 3 years of employment with the company;
- The employee did not provide adequate notice to the employer;
- The employee cannot be replaced adequately in a company with fewer than 20 employees etc.
Art 142 of General Labor Law (No. 7/15 of 15 June 2015).
Marriage Leave – An employee is entitled to a paid leave of absence not exceeding 10 days for marriage purposes.
Leave for Legal Obligations – An employer shall provide leave for a paid period of at least 2 days per month up to a maximum of 8 days in one calendar year to employees in order to comply with legal obligations in relation to the judiciary, military, police, or other authorities with identical powers.
Care Leave – An employee is entitled to paid leave in order to provide care in case of sickness or injury to their spouse, parents, or underage children for a maximum period of 8 working days. Such leave of absence can be extended, however, employers do not have an obligation to pay for extended leave.
Sports and Cultural Activities Leave – An employee can be granted paid leave by an employer for a maximum period of 8 days in a calendar year for sports or cultural activities if it has to be performed within the normal working hours.
Trade Union Leave – An employee is entitled to paid leave for 4 days in each month for exercising powers as an executive member of a trade union and 4 or 5 paid hours per month for union delegates of a trade union with at least 200 or more employees in the workplace. Extra leave can also be provided in such cases but is not required to be paid by the employer.
Bereavement Leave – An employee is entitled to leave to 8 days of paid leave in case of the death of a spouse or partner, parents, children, and other members of the household and 3 days in the case of the death of uncles, birds, in-laws, children, grandchildren, genres and daughters-in-law. The employer can also allow an employee to attend a funeral for a relative not mentioned above it can be justified. The compensation in such cases can be paid or unpaid at the discretion of the employer. Art 145 – 152 of General Labor Law (No. 7/15 of 15 June 2015).