South Africa: Significant Immigration Changes on the Horizon

The South African Department of Home Affairs has announced that it will present a White Paper on immigration to the Cabinet this month that proposes to overhaul South Africa’s immigration priorities and usher in significant changes to the country’s immigration system.

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The White Paper is expected to introduce a points-based system for work permits, new fees on employers who use foreign labor to fund training and education programs for local workers, and heightened workplace inspections and stricter enforcement of companies who hire foreign workers without the proper work authorization.

With high unemployment, sluggish economic recovery and a steady influx of refugees, South Africa has made several indications that it will move to prioritize employment of local workers. Additionally, recent anti-immigration demonstrations have blamed foreigners for loss of jobs, and the Home Affairs Minister has signaled that businesses will be held accountable for illegal working violations.

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