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On Wednesday, the minister of Home Affairs, Aaron Motsoaledi released a list of high-risk countries that would fall under restricted travel conditions during Level 1…

Leisure travellers from these 60 countries would not be allowed to travel to South Africa. However, other categories would be allowed to travel under special conditions which are detailed in the Regulations and Directions on the department’s website.

According to Motsoaledi, the list would be updated every fortnight, and reviewed as coronavirus infections in the “high risk” countries decreased.

“We need to remind our people that the fact that we are at Level 1 lockdown, does not mean that the Covid-19 pandemic is over,” said Motsoaledi.

“We still have to take precautions, and some of them, might be very hard decisions to make. But this will be done in such a way that it strikes a balance between saving lives and livelihoods.”

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How to apply for entry into SA

According to the regulations: Any person from a country listed as having a high COVID-19 infection and transmission rate, who wish to undertake a business travel into South Africa, may with effect from 01 October 2020, in writing, apply to the Minister of Home Affairs and demonstrate reasons for their request to enter the Republic for business purposes during the period of the national state of disaster.

Such applications must be directed to email Covid19BusinessTravel@dha.gov.za and supported by—
(a)    a copy of passport and/or temporary residence visa;
(b)     proof of business activities to be undertaken in the Republic;
(c)    proof of travel itinerary; and
(d)    proof of address or accommodation in the Republic.

Visa validity extended

“The Department of Home Affairs is extending the validity period of legally issued visas which expired during the lockdown period to 31 January 2021,” said Motsoaledi.

“Holders of such visas are permitted to remain in the country under the conditions of their visas until 31 January 2021. Those wishing to be repatriated to their countries within this period can depart without being declared undesirable persons.”

ID card & passport applications open

The Department is also resuming services for applications for identity cards or documents and for all types of passports.

Visa services, including submission of applications through VFS Global, will also resume in the following categories:

Visitor’s visas; study visa; treaty visa; business visa; crew visa; medical treatment visa; relative’s visa; general work visa; critical skills work visa; intra-company transfer work visa; retired person visa; corporate visa; exchange visa;  waiver of prescribed requirement, as contemplated in section 31(2)(c); and appeals or reviews contemplated in section 8 of the Immigration Act.

High Risk Countries as of 1 October 2020

Albania

Argentina

Armenia

Austria

Bahrain

Belgium

Bolivia

Bosnia & Herzegovina

Brazil

Chile

Columbia

Costa Rica

Croatia

Czech Republic

Denmark

Ecuador

France

Georgia

Greece

Guatemala

Guyana

Honduras

Hungary

Iceland

India

Iran

Iraq

Ireland

Israel

Jamaica

Jordan

Kuwait

Lebanon

Luxemburg

Maldives

Malta

Mexico

Moldova

Montenegro

Nepal

Netherlands

North Macedonia

Oman

Palestine

Panama

Paraguay

Peru

Portugal

Puerto Rico

Qatar

Romania

Russia

Slovakia

Suriname

Switzerland

Ukraine

United Emirates

United Kingdom

USA

Venezuela

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