The South African government announced that it plans to introduce reforms to various work visas.

Authorities plan to:

  • Decentralize the adjudication of visa applications to foreign missions and streamline visa application requirements to reduce processing times for obtaining a work visa.
  • Introduce a Trusted Employer Scheme for qualifying companies and establish a points-based system to provide more flexible pathways for skilled applicants.
  • Implement new visa categories for remote workers and start-ups to attract entrepreneurs and increase economic activity.
  • Expand the e-Visa system to include an additional 20 countries (increased from the 14 currently eligible) and extend the e-Visa system to cover new visa categories such as study, business and intra-company transfer visas.

BAL Analysis: The South African government plans to overhaul its work visa system to attract highly skilled foreign nationals and create jobs while protecting and promoting the employment of South Africans. Authorities have not yet announced when they will implement the changes.

This alert has been provided the BAL Global Practice Group. For additional information, please contact

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