SOUTH AFRICA - Government publishes White Paper to overhaul immigration system
  • The South African Government has released its anticipated White Paper that provides a policy framework for comprehensive review and overhaul of the country's immigration system and the introduction of significantRelocation Today - South Africa changes over the next two years.


    The White Paper is intended to bring South Africa's immigration system up to date and calls for strategic management of all aspects of migration to further the country's economic goals – from the entry and departure of foreign nationals, to attracting critical skills and investment, to promoting regional integration and addressing refugee populations, and enforcing compliance regimes.


    Changes requiring only administrative action took effect upon publication; changes requiring legislative approval will be included in legislation to be submitted to Parliament by March 2019.
    Key business immigration proposals:

    • Points-based work permit system: The paper proposes a points-based system combined with critical skills lists or quotas, and recommends a scoring system to be based on factors such as qualifications, work experience, age, amount to invest, type of business and ability and willingness to transfer skills to South Africans.
    • Replacing permanent residency with long-term resident visas: Permanent residency is to be replaced with a long-term resident visa to ensure that applicants continue to meet qualifying criteria on a periodic basis. However, such long-term resident visas are to be fast-tracked for foreign nationals with needed skills, business or investment funds.
    • Resident visas for students: To promote retention of international talent, international students are to be granted resident permits upon graduation to encourage them to stay in the country and contribute to the economy.
    • Skills transfer: Recruitment of skilled foreign workers are to be linked to a mechanism that ensures that skills are transferred to South African citizens, either through direct training programs or through a levy on employers.
    • Visa-free travel for African nationals: A visa-free regime will allow African citizens to visit South Africa for up to 90 days on the condition that return agreements and other security and information-sharing agreements are in place.

    Background: The White Paper details many of the proposals that were first outlined in a Green Paper that the Department of Home Affairs released last year and reiterates the policy objectives of systemic overhaul of the immigration system.


    Analysis: The White Paper's policy objectives and proposed changes have far-reaching implications for South African employers and multinational companies that rely on foreign talent. Companies should anticipate significant changes to the country's immigration regime in the coming two years.

    This post has been provided by Berry Appleman & Leiden (BAL) Corporate Immigration. For more information please contact: Kristi Paulsen with Relocation Today or Jennifer Fisher with BAL 

    About Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP
    Founded in 1980, Berry Appleman & Leiden (BAL) provides comprehensive global immigration services from seventeen offices across the U.S. and Globe. BAL manages global visa matters and customized application approaches for work permits, business visas, and residence permits in more than 100 countries. With a single cost center for worldwide operations, BAL offers centralized management with regional and local support for the complete spectrum of global immigration matters.


    Source: Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP
    Copyright © 2017 Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. All rights reserved. Reprinting or digital redistribution to the public is permitted only with the express written permission of Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. For inquiries please contact:  copyright@balglobal.com

SOUTH AFRICA - Government publishes White Paper to overhaul immigration system
  • The South African Government has released its anticipated White Paper that provides a policy framework for comprehensive review and overhaul of the country's immigration system and the introduction of significantRelocation Today - South Africa changes over the next two years.


    The White Paper is intended to bring South Africa's immigration system up to date and calls for strategic management of all aspects of migration to further the country's economic goals – from the entry and departure of foreign nationals, to attracting critical skills and investment, to promoting regional integration and addressing refugee populations, and enforcing compliance regimes.


    Changes requiring only administrative action took effect upon publication; changes requiring legislative approval will be included in legislation to be submitted to Parliament by March 2019.
    Key business immigration proposals:

    • Points-based work permit system: The paper proposes a points-based system combined with critical skills lists or quotas, and recommends a scoring system to be based on factors such as qualifications, work experience, age, amount to invest, type of business and ability and willingness to transfer skills to South Africans.
    • Replacing permanent residency with long-term resident visas: Permanent residency is to be replaced with a long-term resident visa to ensure that applicants continue to meet qualifying criteria on a periodic basis. However, such long-term resident visas are to be fast-tracked for foreign nationals with needed skills, business or investment funds.
    • Resident visas for students: To promote retention of international talent, international students are to be granted resident permits upon graduation to encourage them to stay in the country and contribute to the economy.
    • Skills transfer: Recruitment of skilled foreign workers are to be linked to a mechanism that ensures that skills are transferred to South African citizens, either through direct training programs or through a levy on employers.
    • Visa-free travel for African nationals: A visa-free regime will allow African citizens to visit South Africa for up to 90 days on the condition that return agreements and other security and information-sharing agreements are in place.

    Background: The White Paper details many of the proposals that were first outlined in a Green Paper that the Department of Home Affairs released last year and reiterates the policy objectives of systemic overhaul of the immigration system.


    Analysis: The White Paper's policy objectives and proposed changes have far-reaching implications for South African employers and multinational companies that rely on foreign talent. Companies should anticipate significant changes to the country's immigration regime in the coming two years.

    This post has been provided by Berry Appleman & Leiden (BAL) Corporate Immigration. For more information please contact: Kristi Paulsen with Relocation Today or Jennifer Fisher with BAL 

    About Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP
    Founded in 1980, Berry Appleman & Leiden (BAL) provides comprehensive global immigration services from seventeen offices across the U.S. and Globe. BAL manages global visa matters and customized application approaches for work permits, business visas, and residence permits in more than 100 countries. With a single cost center for worldwide operations, BAL offers centralized management with regional and local support for the complete spectrum of global immigration matters.


    Source: Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP
    Copyright © 2017 Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. All rights reserved. Reprinting or digital redistribution to the public is permitted only with the express written permission of Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. For inquiries please contact:  copyright@balglobal.com