South Africa’s New Draft Policy On International Migration
The South African Department of Home Affairs recently published a Green Paper on International Migration (Government Gazette 40088) for public comments.
It argues that the current international migration policy should be replaced with a new managed migration approach that is in line with the African development agenda. A number of developments in recent years have demanded policy reform. South Africa has become a major tourist destination, transit hub for air travellers in Africa, popular venue for international events, and a major player in areas such as film making and astronomy.
It is also experiencing large shortages of skilled workers in most economic sectors. In 2014, more than 15 million arrivals of foreign visitors were recorded by the Department of Home Affairs of which 90 percent involved Southern African Development Community (SADC) nationals. South Africa is also host to the largest number of refugees and asylum-seekers on the continent and the fifth largest in the world. And many African countries are liberalising their immigration regimes in line with the African Union’s Agenda 2063 vision; urging South Africa to follow suit. The Green Paper argues it is neither desirable nor possible to stop or reduce international migration.