Critical skills list: Foreigners wanted for jobs we can’t do – full details

New-Critical-Skills-Visa-List-of-Shortage-Occupations-for-South-AfricaThe heart-ache of South Africans who are working abroad but would prefer to live at home is palpable when you read conversations in social media groups catering for the diaspora. Many earn a
living elsewhere because they have been unable to find jobs, or employment that pays enough to cover all the bills, in South Africa. It was with some surprise that many learnt that the jobs they are doing elsewhere are on the country’s critical skills list, released this week. The details, supplied here by New World Immigration, unleashed emotional debate, with many puzzled that foreigners are being sought when there are many South Africans who are eligible for these jobs. Some of their mates, who are still in South Africa and have the skills on this list but can’t find work in their fields also entered the chat circles to weigh in. Here’s the piece by Robbie Ragless, director of New World Immigration, that has got South Africans elsewhere in the world talking. Have a read, and then share your views, below his article. – JC

By Robbie Ragless*

Robbie Ragless, director at New World Immigration, gives the BizNews community the low-down on South Africa's critical skills list – which was released on 4 June.
South African Critical Skills Visa List – what you need to know: Robbie Ragless, director at New World Immigration, gives the BizNews community the low-down on South Africa’s critical skills list – which was released on 4 June.

The much anticipated South African Critical Skills Visa list was released on 4 June 2014.

Causing much controversy and speculation among immigrants, travellers, immigration professionals and even the South African Law Society, the list was published more than a week after the new immigration act had been gazetted.

While Department of Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba a week ago said that the Critical Skills Visa list would be published in the first week of June, he admitted, at the time that the register of jobs regarded as critical or undesirable had not been published yet.

“Undesirable businesses will be things like brothels. Artisans might be critical skills…They will be gazetted next week and we will have a list,” was all he had to say at the time.

Dr Llewellyn Curlewis, president of the Northern Provinces Law Society, said to the Independent group that apart from the fact that this list had not been made available sooner, the regulations still seemed incomplete.

“Department fees for all categories of visas have not been determined; the list of what are ‘critical skills’ has not been published; investment and income levels required for business and retirement permits were omitted from the regulations and the documentation required in order to apply for general and critical skills work visas was not gazetted,” said Curlewis.

This week a storm broke over the validity and legality of certain new visa specifications and questions are being raised about the constitutionality of the new laws. Immigration lawyers and professionals have, as a result, threatened to go to court.

But Gigaba remained confident the department has covered all the bases saying: “We have tested the regulations in the NCOP (National Council of Provinces) and believe they are constitutional. If anyone believes otherwise, they are most welcome to approach the Constitutional Court. We will contest them there.”

On 2 June 2014 in a statement to the media Home Affairs Director General Mkuseli Apleni said: “We need people who will be able to come to our country in order to improve our economy.”

“To do that, we need to bring up permits which will allow people to easily come to the country.”

Among the regulations for the new visa applications is the list of critical skills which had finally been released this morning (4 June 2014).  This list specifies what professions and trades will qualify for work permits regardless of securing an employment offer.

Critical skills list: Who qualifies?

The newly published “Skills or qualifications determined to be critical for the Republic of South Africa in relation to an application for a Critical Skills Visa or Permanent Residence Permit” – Immigration Act, 2002 (Act No. 13 of 2002) – Section 19(4), to be read with Regulations 19(5), lists the following as being considered some of the critical skills. 

The Critical Skills List – Published 3rd June 2014

Business, Economics and Management Studies

  • Agricultural Engineer
  • Agricultural Scientist
  • Forestry Technician
  • Sheep Shearer
  • Architect
  • Construction Project Manager
  • Land Surveyor
  • Quantity Surveyor
  • Urban and Regional Planner
  • Actuaries and Risk Assessors
  • Corporate General Manager
  • External Auditor
  • Financial Investment Advisor

Information Communication & Technology

  • CISCO Solution Specialist
  • CISCO Engineers
  • Solutions Architects in Telecommunications and ICT
  • Integrated Developers (PHP, PERL, JAVA)
  • Network Analyst
  • IT Security Specialist
  • System Integration Specialist
  • Enterprise Architects
  • Data Centre Operations
  • Network Specialist (Security)
  • Database Specialist
  • Microsoft System Engineers
  • Network Controllers
  • AV Specialist (Anti-virus)
  • Desktop Support Engineer

Engineering

  • Energy Engineer
  • Metallurgical Engineer
  • Chemical Engineer
  • Civil Engineer
  • Electrical Engineer
  • Electrical Installation Inspector
  • Electronics Engineer
  • Geologist
  • Industrial and Production Engineers
  • Industrial Designer
  • Manufacturing Managers
  • Materials Engineer
  • Mechanical Engineer
  • Mining Engineer
  • Production/Operations Manager
  • Quality System Manager
  • Research and Development Manager
  • Ship’s Engineer
  • Telecommunications Engineers
  • Electrical Engineering Technologist
  • Energy Engineering Technologist
  • Mechanical Engineering Technologist
  • Metallurgical Engineering Technologist
  • Mining Engineering Technologist
  • Air Conditioning and Mechanical Services Plumber
  • Automotive Electrician
  • Automotive Motor Mechanic
  • Boiler Maker
  • Chemical Engineering Technologist
  • Civil Engineering Technologist
  • Diesel Mechanic
  • Electronics Engineering Technologist
  • Fitter and Turner
  • Materials Engineering Technologist
  • Mechatronics Technician
  • Metal Fabricator
  • Physical and Engineering Science Technicians
  • Pressure Welder
  • Structural Plaster
  • Toolmaker

Health Professions and Related Clinical Sciences

  • Medical Superintendant/Public Health Manager
  • Public Health Physician
  • General and Specialist Medical Practitioner
  • Hospital Pharmacist
  • Nursing Professionals
  • Veterinarian
  • Registered Nurse (child and family health)
  • Retail Pharmacist

Life and Earth Sciences

  • Environmental Engineers
  • Environmental Manager
  • Industrial Pharmacist
  • Aquatic Scientist
  • Animal Scientist
  • Advanced Composites Engineering
  • Archaeological/Paleontological Specialist
  • Bioeconomist
  • Biochemists
  • Bioinformatician
  • Bioinformaticist
  • Biological Scientist
  • Botanical Scientist
  • Chemical Scientist
  • Computational Biologist
  • Environmental Scientist
  • Ecological Scientist
  • Food Scientist
  • Engineering Geologist
  • Geochemist
  • Geohazards Specialist
  • Geologist
  • Geophycist
  • Laboratory Technologist and Technician
  • Marine Bioscientist
  • Materials Scientist
  • Metallurgical Scientist
  • Metrology
  • Microbiological Scientist
  • Polymer Scientist
  • Protein Scientist
  • Seismologist
  • Soil Scientist
  • Toxicology Scientist
  • Water Resource Scientist

Professionals and Associate Professional

  • Land and Engineering Surveyors
  • Electronic Engineering Technician
  • Materials Engineering Technologist
  • Electrical Engineering Technician
  • Safety, Health, Environment and Quality Practitioner
  • Draughtsperson
  • Mechanical Engineering Technician
  • Chemical Engineering Technician
  • Organisation and Methods Analyst (Incl. scheduler, estimator)
  • Surveying Technician
  • Geomatics Technician
  • Quantity Surveying Technician
  • Civil Engineering Technician
  • Materials Engineer Non-destructive Testing (NDT)
  • Materials Engineering Technician – Road materials
  • Materials Tester
  • Construction Safety, Health, Environment and Quality (SHEQ) Agent/Manager/Officer
  • Aeronautical Engineering
  • Architectural Senior Technologist
  • Architectural Draughtsperson
  • Astronomer
  • Physicist (SKA)
  • Geomagnetic Physicist
  • Solar Physicist
  • Space Physicist
  • Plasma Physicist
  • Space Technologist
  • Space Weather Specialist
  • Magnetic Technology Specialist
  •  Radar Engineering
  • Radio Frequency Engineering
  • Environmental Technologist
  • Industrial Engineer
  • Industrial Engineering Technologist
  • Industrial Engineering Technician
  • Landscape Architect
  • Landscape Contract Manager
  • Landscape Horticulturalist
  • Mining Technician

Trades

  • Millwright
  • Boilermaker (For Strategic Infrastructure Projects)
  • Industrial Machinery Mechanic
  • Pipe Fitter
  • Double Coded Welder
  • Rigger
  • Moulder
  • Raise-bore Operators
  • Raise-bore Foreman

Business Process Outsourcing (BPO)

  • Software Development Engineers and Managers
  • Systems Architects, Engineers and Managers
  • Foreign Language speakers for specialist language support and technical or sales support (German, Swiss German, Flemish, Greek, Swedish, Danish, Italian, Dutch, Spanish, Mandarin and French)
  • Business Analyst
  • Quality Analyst
  • Quality Assurance Specialist/Auditor
  • Customer Service Manager/Team Lead

Academics and Researchers

  • Doctoral Graduates (Acquired Abroad)
  • Research in any of the following areas;
  • Galaxy Formation and Evolution
  • Galaxy Structure and Dynamics
  • Pulsars and Black Holes
  • Pulsars and Black Holes
  • Pulsars and Gravitational Waves
  • Deep Observations of the earliest Radio Galaxies
  • Dynamic and Transient Burst
  • VLBI Operations
  • Search for CO to investigate role of Molecular Hydrogen
  • Deep Surveyors of Neutral Hydrogen Gas in the Early Universe
  • Cosmology and Dark Energy
  • Cosmic Magnetism
  • Calibration and Imaging of Radio Interferometer data
  • Pulsar Research
  • Pulsar and Gravitational Waves
  • VLBI Operations
  • Signal Processing
  • Observational Radio Astronomy in General
  • Algorithm for Radio Astronomy
  • Signal Processing for Radio Astronomy
  • Supercomputing for Radio Astronomy
  • Software Development for Radio Astronomy
  • Data and Streaming- Real-Time Processing of Massive Data Amounts
  • Green Computing- Extreme Performance at Minor Energy Cost
  • Performance at Minor Energy Costs
  • EMC and Spectrum Management
  • Beam Modelling
  • Antenna Modelling
  • Feeds for Radio Astronomy Systems
  • Receivers for Radio Astronomy Systems
  • Signal Processing for Radio Astronomy
  • High Speed Data Transport
  • Nano-photonics-Data Transport Power
  • Nanotechnology
  • Palaeosciences
  • Reduction over Short and Long Distances
  • Antenna Design
  • Antenna Foundation Design
  • RFI Shielded Buildings and Facilities
  • Advanced Manufacturing
  • Space Science and Technology
  • Global Change
  • Energy Security
  • Information Communication Technology
  • Earth Observation
  • Natural and Applied Sciences

Download the government gazette here –> 
New Critical Skills Visa List of Shortage Occupations for South Africa

What you would need:

Published in the Government Gazette on 22 May 2014 the following regulations apply:

An application for a Critical Skills Work Visa has to be accompanied by proof that the applicant falls within the critical skills category in the form of:

(a) A confirmation, in writing, from the professional body, council or board recognised by the South African Qualifications Association (SAQA), in terms of Section 13(1)(i) of the National Qualifications Framework Act, or any relevant government department confirming the skills or qualifications of the applicant and appropriate post qualification experience.

(b) If required by law, proof of application for a certificate of registration with the professional body, council or board recognised by SAQA in terms of Section 13(1)(i) of the National Qualifications Framework Act.

(c) Proof of evaluation of the foreign qualification by SAQA and translated by a sworn translator into one of the official languages of the Republic.

A Critical Skills Work Visa shall be issued for under 5 years. A spouse and dependent children of a holder of a Critical Skills Work Visa shall be issued with an appropriate visa valid for a period that does not exceed the period of validity of the applicant’s Critical Skills Work Visa.

– See more at: http://www.nwivisas.com/nwi-blog/south-africa/new-critical-skills-visa-list-of-shortage-occupations-for-south-africa/#sthash.ntt3Srqv.dpuf

* Robbie Ragless is Director at New World Immigration.

This article is republished here on BizNews with the kind permission of New World Immigration.