In a move aimed at attracting foreign workers and investments, South Africa has announced that it will be revising its work visa system. The new system will streamline the process and reduce the processing time to obtain a work visa.
The decision was announced by South African President Cyril Ramaphosa during the South Africa Investment Conference.
Trusted Employer Scheme and Points-Based System
The South African government will introduce a Trusted Employer Scheme for qualifying companies and establish a points-based system to provide more flexible pathways for skilled applicants, in line with global best practices.
The new system will make it easier for foreign workers to obtain work visas, especially those with skills that are in high demand.
Overhaul to Raise $110 Billion Worth of Investments
Apart from streamlining the system and reducing wait times, South Africa is overhauling its work visa system in order to raise $110 billion worth of investments by 2028. The overhaul will also help to prevent a backlog of visa applications like the one experienced in March 2023, where a large number of foreign workers had their visas cancelled at the last minute.
Expansion of e-Visa System and New Visa Categories
The South African government will be expanding the e-visa system to include an additional 20 countries above the 14 that are currently eligible. The e-visa system will also be extended to cover new visa categories such as study, business, and intra-company transfer visas.
This move will make it easier for foreign students and businesspeople to visit South Africa.
Towards the end of March 2023, the South African Department of Home Affairs had a total of 62,692 visa applications as a backlog. The revision of the work visa system will help to prevent future backlogs and ensure that the visa application process runs smoothly.
Positive Response from Indian Nationals
Many Indian nationals have applauded the decision to revise the South African work visa system. The move is expected to open up more employment and investment opportunities for Indian workers and businesses.
By reducing wait times and streamlining the process, South Africa will create many job opportunities for foreign workers. The country is also planning to streamline its student visa system.
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