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IMMIGRATION: International Business Organisations Speak Out Against The New immigration Regulations

 



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Members of the local and international business community have spoken out against the new immigration regulations, highlighting the many obstacles now imposed on multinational companies, potential new investors and even students.

The Cape Chamber of Commerce, the French South African Chamber of Commerce, the Cap40 and the Belgian Business Network hosted a joint-event aimed at educating business on the consequences of the new immigration regulations.

The event was attended by the Cape Chamber’s President, Janine Myburgh, the French Consul in Cape Town, Xavier d’Argoeuves and the Belgian Consul in Cape Town Gerard Uytterhaegen.

Andreas Krensel, CEO of IBN Business & Immigration, gave an overview of the main changes brought about by the new regulations in place since May 2014, emphasising that there needed to be a critical reassessment and revision of the former regulations. He suggested that the process of the revision of the laws had been flawed by the lack of dialogue with the main stakeholders affected by it. Mr Krensel also noted that abolishing Immigration Practitioners as well as not allowing legal representation was further impeding business owners and employees seeking legal status to work and live in the country.

Anton Rollino, member of the Executive Committee of the Commercial Producers Association of South Africa, highlighted the fact that this reform would have significant impact on several industries which are dependent on foreign workers, such as the film and advertising industry. Despite showing good growth over the past decades, these sectors now face stiff competition from other countries with more accommodating regulations.

The large audience present at the event, mainly foreign entrepreneurs and professionals or local employers hiring foreign workers, showed their frustration with many aspects of the new requirements. This was demonstrated when the question and answer session lasted as long as the presentations themselves.

“It is clear that these regulations need an urgent overhaul. Both local and international businesses are being significantly impacted and it is inevitable that both the region and the country will lose out on potential foreign direct investment as a result. The Cape business organisations will continue to engage on this topic and we support MEC Alan Winde in his efforts to have them reviewed as a matter or urgency,” said Ms Myburgh.
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