TRAVEL

Minister Winde relieved by Gigaba back track

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Western Cape Economic Opportunities Minister, Alan Winde, is relieved by the announcement made by Minister of Home Affairs, Malusi Gigaba, that the requirement for children to present unabridged birth certificates upon entry and exit from South Africa, and have written permission from both parents to travel, has been placed on hold. These requirements came about as part of a set of strict new regulations attached to the Immigration Act, and were due to be implemented on 1 October 2014.



Minister Winde said: “The impacts on ordinary citizens of these regulations were not thought through. Days after they were announced, my Red Tape Unit received a number of reports regarding the effect they were set to have on families traveling to and from our destination. Many potential tourists were panic-stricken. I am pleased that on the back of public pressure, Minister Gigaba has relented to their postponement. It is my intention to ensure that a full impact study is conducted on them and handed to Minister Gigaba prior to them being reintroduced.”

The remainder of the requirements set out in the regulations, including revised rules which make it far more difficult for travellers to obtain visas, have already been implemented, causing nothing short of a crisis in our tourism industry: “The regulations that have already been implemented are threatening livelihoods in the sector. I will continue to push for their postponement too, until such time as a regulatory impact assessment has been conducted.



“Gigaba has now shown a willingness to work with other government departments and industry to mitigate the effects of his legislation on our economy and jobs, and I hope he will continue to take positive steps in this regard. The decision to place these two regulations on hold opens the door for South Africa to explore ways of becoming cutting edge. Through the use of smart technology, such as electronic visas, we can solve the problem of illegals while at the same time making our region more attractive to business and leisure tourists. ”

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