Alan Winde Western Cape Remote Working Visa

Photo: Alan Winde / Twitter

Govt may introduce a ‘Remote Working Visa’ – bringing visitors back to SA

This is ambitious, but it may just be the post-pandemic planning needed to revive the SA tourist economy. So, how would a Remote Working Visa, erm, work?

Alan Winde Western Cape Remote Working Visa

Photo: Alan Winde / Twitter

The Western Cape Premier Alan Winde believes the time is right for South Africa to accommodate a new kind of tourist. He has confirmed that his department will lobby the ANC government to introduce a ‘Remote Working Visa’ – which would allow people who can work from anywhere in the world to spend more time in South Africa.

Could a Remote Working Visa be issued in South Africa?

The bold proposal looks to tap into the remote working boom sparked by the pandemic. Many employees who were tied to their offices have found they can operate seamlessly from home. In the age of WiFi, Zoom meetings, and 5G internet connections, workers are taking on a more ‘nomadic’ existence – and the Western Cape is sensing an opportunity.

Speaking during his State of the Province Address on Wednesday, Alan Winde confirmed that a Remote Working Visa would encourage people to come and stay in Mzansi, balancing their work time with leisure pursuits. His preliminary suggestion of giving these visitors a three-month pass could be extended – but these proposals are at a very early stage.

‘Digital nomads’ encouraged to come and work in SA

Cape Town was recently listed as one of the 50 best destinations for remote working. Its abundance of co-working spaces, internet cafes, and scenic spots bring a welcome change of scenery for those who are heavily reliant on their laptops and other tech devices to carry out their jobs. According to Winde, SA must now ‘roll out the red carpet’ for all travellers:

“We have everything it takes to be the best remote working location in the world if we remove the red tape – and roll-out the red-carpet for all travellers. To do so, South Africa urgently needs to introduce a ‘Remote Working Visa’.”

“The Western Cape Government will therefore lobby both the President and the Minister of Home Affairs, Aaron Motsoaledi, to introduce this visa as soon as possible. These ‘digital nomads’ are a new kind of tourist, who will stay in our province for three months instead of three weeks, enjoying our tourism offer while working on their laptops.”