Massive boost for one of South Africa’s biggest employers

 ·7 Apr 2024

The Consumer Goods Council of South Africa (CGCSA) has welcomed the new work visa rules for South Africa.

Last week (28 March), the Department of Home Affairs gazetted regulations that amended the Immigration Act of 2002, introducing a new remote work visa for foreigners earning more than R1 million per year.

The regulations also replaced the highly-contested critical skills list with a new points system.

Zinhle Tyikwe, CEO of CGCSA, said that introducing the points will hopefully ease the administrative burden that international companies with businesses in South Africa face when hiring skilled staff.

The consumer goods sector is one of the biggest sectors in the country, providing over 2.5 million formal jobs.

Tyikwe said that some member companies have experienced delays in processing work permits from the Department of Home Affairs.

These delays have led to companies delaying investment decisions, which affects their operations and potential to employee more locals.

“There are skills that are not available locally and our multinational member companies have experienced delays in the processing and issuance of work permits at the Department of Home Affairs,” she said.

“Resultantly, this has not only caused frustration but also affected investment decisions as they require critical skills for their operations.”

Despite welcoming the new regulations, the CGCSA wants greater coordination between the Department of Home Affairs and the Department of Labour, with the latter also involved in the processing of work visas.

“There is evidently increased workload for both departments, which has in the past resulted in the administrative delays our members have experienced.”

“We therefore urge both departments to ensure that the new work visa rules will be expeditiously processed and issued so that our affected member companies can recruit much-needed skills to help manage and grow their operations.”

She acknowledged the need for skill transfer and said that members continue to commit to broad-based transformation via skills development.

“The recruitment of foreign skills should be seen in a positive light from the perspective that companies will be able to plug in the skills gap while also using foreign talent to transfer skills to locals, many of whom are young, educated South Africans from previously economically disadvantaged backgrounds.”

The new regulations from the Department of Home Affairs can be found below:

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