Foreign students to stay on in South Africa after graduating

Foreign students to stay on in South Africa after graduating

Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba has announced it will be possible for foreign students to live in South Africa after they graduated with the objective to attract more foreign students and contributing to the national development.

The aim is to develop immigration policies and practices, in respect of international students, which are beneficial to all foreigners, beneficial to their home countries, and beneficial to South Africa.

Malusi Gigaba

picture: Martin Rhodes

Mr Gigaba wants to make it easy for foreigners to obtain study visas, have a pleasant experience whilst studying and staying in South Africa after graduation.

Home Affairs is developing proposals in this regard which will be announced soon. The students have an opportunity to give their opinion on the offerings for visas.

The Department of Higher Education & Training was also invited to the event to engage with the foreign students on the academic and enrollment dimensions of their studies in South Africa.

Gigaba said, “Skilled immigrants make an important contribution in destination economies, but their talent is too often wasted… students are especially advantageous, as their qualifications have been obtained here in South Africa and are thus able to transition seamlessly into their chosen fields

Having this said, Home Affairs is still making it difficult for foreigners to apply for a General Work Visa even though they do qualify and have the correct qualification for the specific job advertised. Head office are currently rejecting Critical Skills Visa applications for reasons that are not valid and not mentioned in the Immigration act nor the new Immigration Regulations of 2014.

Will the new process only make it easier for a graduate with no experience in the specified field to get the job, rather than an experienced skilled worker?

Minister Gigaba ended his address by asking delegates to share their views, concerns, criticisms and aspirations. The Minister specifically asked for feedback on students’ biggest challenges and where they see the biggest opportunities for improvement.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you need assistance in any immigration related matter.

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