Level 4 work

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Back to work: These industries are now allowed to reopen during Level 4

The economy is opening up at a gradual place, and on Wednesday, more places of work have been told they can reopen during Level 4 of lockdown.

Level 4 work

Image via Adobe Stock

Thousands of South Africans will be able to rejoice on Wednesday, after Khumbudzo Ntshavheni, the Minister of Small Business Development, announced that several industries would be allowed to operate under Level 4 conditions. If you need your car fixing, or simply have a sweet tooth, it’s good news all round.

Which industries can go back to work in South Africa?

Bakeries and automotive repair centres headline the list of workplaces who have been told to ‘get back to business’, effective immediately. The following statement was published in the government gazette:

“All formal and informal small businesses are required to comply with the Occupational Health and Safety Measures in Workplaces COVID-19 Directions issued by the Minister of Employment and Labour and the Guidelines of the Health Department, with specific reference to preventing the spread of coronavirus.”

“Employers must ensure no-one enters the premises if they aren’t wearing a cloth face mask, or another appropriate item that covers the nose and mouth. Workers must be given PPE. All formal and informal small businesses are encouraged to provide transport for their employees during the national state of disaster.”

Khumbudzo Ntshavheni

The businesses that can now reopen under Level 4 laws

Small bakeries and confectionery stores

  • They are not allowed to sell products prohibited by the current regulations.
  • These businesses also cannot allow the premises to be used as sleeping quarters.
  • Shops must possess a business licence or permit to trade, or a business licence or trading permit issued by the relevant municipality.

Independent hardware stores

  • They are specifically banned from selling “sub-standard goods”.
  • No place of work can home, harbour or provide sleeping quarters to any citizen.
  • Shops must possess a business license or permit to trade, or a business license or trading permit issued by the relevant municipality.

Rules for restaurants clarified

  • They may not sell cooked food unless it is for home deliveries and the orders are placed via the phone or online.

Mechanics and automotive maintenance professionals

  • Tow-trucks, vehicle recovery and automobile repairs (motor mechanics), including small-scale vehicle services centres, small-scale motor body repair shops, and fitment centres can reopen.


  • Plumbers, electricians, locksmiths, glaziers, roof repairs, and emergency repair workers can work again.
  • Vehicle service centres, fitting centres or motor repair workshops are encouraged to apply for updated business licences.

Sole traders of clothing and textiles

  • Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) may not be fitted or tried on by customers before purchase.
  • All traders must ensure that sizes are clearly marked before products are purchased.
  • Traders within the clothing and textiles sector are prohibited from selling PPEs that had been fitted, tried on or returned by a customer – they must put signs up which indicate this, too.