South Africans should be given visa-free access to the UK after tightening up security around its passport, says Home Affairs minister Dr Aaron Motsoaledi.
In an interview this past week (9 October), Motsoaledi said that while South African citizens were previously allowed to enter the UK visa-free, this access was revoked after a number of fraudulent incidents.
“Since that time we have improved (South Africa’s passport’s security) and we think the UK must now reconsider allowing visa-free access,” the minister said.
Managing director of visa solutions company Move Up, Ryan Rennison, pointed out that the UK revoked South Africa’s visa-free status in 2009 after 10,000 blank passports went missing – a notable security hazard for a nation that has had its fair share of terrorist attacks.
“It’s been 10 years since South African passport holders arrived on UK shores without requiring visas to enter the country, but the Department of Home Affairs is hoping to rectify the situation,” Rennison said.
“While South Africans have been murmuring about the visa system for some time, it seems Aaron Motsoaledi has finally brought this issue to the fore.”
While the visa-free access to the UK will likely be a major boon for South Africa, there are a number of countries passport holders can travel to visa-free right now – 100 according to the latest Henley & Partners passport index.
The index, which is used by governments to monitor the power of their passports – ranks the South African passport as the 53rd most powerful, based on the number of countries one can access visa free.
Below BusinessTech looked at 15 top countries you can visit visa-free right now.