Eswatini (Swaziland): Doing business & staying in touch

Doing business in Eswatini (Swaziland)

Lightweight suits are generally expected for business. Appointments are necessary and business cards are exchanged. English is widely spoken in business circles.

Office hours

Mon-Fri 0800-1300 and 1400-1645.


The economy is dominated by and closely linked with that of South Africa, and the country is a member of the Southern African Customs Union (through which the government receives around half its total revenue).

Agriculture is by far the largest part of the economy, employing over 75% of the working population. The industrial sector is mainly concerned with processing agricultural products, largely food and wood products including paper, and also the production of textiles and metal goods. The country's mining industry produces coal, of which there are extensive reserves, and diamonds.

Unemployment remains at an estimated 40% (2006); GDP growth rate is 1.6% (2007); and inflation is running at about 6% (2007).
The principal facilities are at the Royal Swazi Convention Centre in the Ezulwini Valley, which has seating for up to 600 people. Several hotels also have facilities for smaller numbers, with back-up services. The tourist office (see Contact Addresses) can supply information.


US$2.7 billion (2007).

Main exports

Soft drink concentrates, sugar, pulp, canned fruits and cotton yarn.

Main imports

Chemicals, clothing, food, machinery and motor vehicles.

Main trading partners

South Africa, EU and Japan.

Keeping in Touch in Eswatini (Swaziland)


A landline network covers most of the country, but most people rely on mobile phones. Outgoing international calls must go through the international operator.

Mobile phone

The only mobile network available throughout Eswatini (Swaziland) is MTN. Mobile coverage is good, with 90% of the population having access, but it can be patchy in extremely rural areas.


Internet facilities can be found in the main towns like Mbabane and Manzini. Not all hotels or lodges offer Wi-Fi services, so it’s best to check before booking.


Post offices can be found in all towns. Airmail to Europe can be unreliable, taking anywhere from two weeks to two months to arrive.

Post office hours

Mon-Fri 0800-1300 and 1400-1600, Sat 0800-1100.


Eswatini (Swaziland) is an absolute monarchy, meaning that complete freedom of the press does not exist in the same way as it does in democratic societies.


• The press is dominated by two main English-language newspapers: The Swazi Observer is state owned, while The Times of Swaziland is an independent publication, allowing it to be more questioning of the regime.


Swazi TV is a state-run channel operated by the Swaziland Television Authority.


• State-run Swaziland Broadcasting and Information Service operates The Siswati Channel, The English Channel and The Information Service.

Visa and passport information is updated regularly and is correct at the time of publishing. You should verify critical travel information independently with the relevant embassy before you travel.