CGCSA Welcomes Regulations To Ease Recruitment Of Foreign Labour

05 April 2024

The Consumer Goods Council of South Africa (CGCSA) has welcomed planned new work visa rules to simplify the recruitment of foreign skills saying their effective implementation will support efforts to attract investment.

Zinhle Tyikwe, CEO of CGCSA said replacing the critical list with a points system to recruit expatriates will hopefully ease the administrative and bureaucratic burden that multinational companies with businesses in South Africa have been facing to hire skilled staff. In addition to removing the critical list, it is reported the regulations also introduce remote work visas for foreigners earning more than R1m a year who want to relocate to South Africa.

Tyikwe said the consumer goods sector represented by the CGCSA, as one of the largest employers in the country, has some member companies who have been experiencing delays to process work permit applications at the Department of Home Affairs. The delays have led to some of the companies postponing making investment decisions and this has affected their operations and potential to employ more local people.

“There are skills that are not available locally and our multinational member companies have experienced delays in the processing and issuance of work permits at the Department of Home Affairs. Resultantly, this has not only caused frustration but also affected investment decisions as they require critical skills for their operations,” she said.

She said while welcoming the new regulations and wait for the publication of the notice outlining the points system criteria, CGCSA also urges that there be better and efficient coordination between the Department of Home Affairs and the Department of Labour which is also involved in the processing of work visas.

“There is evidently increased workload for both departments which has in the past resulted in the administrative delays our members have experienced. We therefore urge both departments to ensure that the new work visa rules will be expeditiously processed and issued so that our affected member companies can recruit much needed skills to help manage and grow their operations,” she said.

Tyikwe said CGCSA acknowledges the need for skills transfer and its members are and continue to be committed to broad-based transformation through skills development. “The recruitment of foreign skills should therefore be seen in a positive light from the perspective that companies will be able to plug in the skills gap while also using foreign talent to transfer skills to locals, many of whom are young, educated South Africans from previously economically disadvantaged backgrounds,” she concluded.