On Wednesday, 29 March 2023, the Department of Home Affairs in South Africa has once again extended the temporary visa measures that were previously implemented in an attempt to address the backlogs in processing visa applications and outcomes on waiver applications. The extension is valid with immediate effect.
- Waiver applications: Applicants with long-term visas who have applied for a waiver and the waiver applications are still pending as of 31 March 2023, are granted a temporary extension until 31 December 2023. This is to allow time for the Department of Home Affairs to process the pending applications, and for the applicants to be able to collect their outcomes and submit their relevant visa applications. Applicants who wish to abandon their waiver applications and depart South Africa will be able to do so on or before 31 December 2023 without being declared undesirable. Those applicants that are from countries that are visa restricted are required to apply for a visitor visa, which will allow them entry into the country.
- Visa applications: Applicants with long-term visas that form part of the 62692 visa backlog applications will be granted an extension on their current visa status and conditions until 31 December 2023. Applicants who wish to abandon their visa applications and depart South Africa will be able to do so on or before 31 December 2023 without being declared undesirable. Those applicants that are from countries that are visa restricted, who travelled out of the country with their Visa Facilitation Services (VFS) receipts, are required to apply for a visitor visa, which will allow them entry into the country to await the outcome of their visa application.
The extension only applies to foreign nationals:
- Who have been legally admitted into South Africa;
- Who have submitted an application via VFS before or on 31 March 2023;
- Who are long term visa holders (Those whose visas were issued for less than 90 days and have not received their visa extension outcomes by 31 March 2023, would have to leave the country by no later than 30 April).
If you have any queries in this regard, please contact your local IR Specialist: IR Contacts – Retail Motor Industry Organisation (rmi.org.za).