Critical Skills Work Visa will enable the South African government to achieve the objectives of programmes such as National Development Plan (NDP), Industrial Policy Action Plan (IPAP) and New Growth Plan (NGP). The Department of Home Affairs has amended the Immigration legislation that came with various changes, which led to the introduction of Critical Skills Work Visa (CSWV).

The Critical Skills Work Visa emanates from the merger of the former Exceptional Skills and Quota Work visas. The latter was issued in line with the Quota List of 2009, which had skills categoriesrequirements, and the quota of skills targeted in the Republic of South Africa. The Critical Skills work visa is issued in accordance with the critical skills list. The list was developed in conjunction with the occupations in high demand and the scarce skills lists of the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET).

Objective of Critical Skills VISA

The main objective of the critical skills work visa is to assist the South African government to realize the achievement of the National Infrastructure Project, the Strategic Infrastructure Projects and Key National Strategic Projects in support of the Department of Trade and Industry.

Critical Skills Work Visa Program for Foreigners in Information Technology

Introduced in the new Immigration regulations in June 2014, the Critical skills work visa and permit saw a refreshingly forward thinking approach by the Department of Home Affairs to attracting much needed skills to South Africa and improving the visa and permit application process.


In order for ICITP to assess whether an applicant has the skill, experience and qualifications to qualify for a critical skills visa, you must submit the following information/ documentation:

  • Qualifications/Certifications (Certified)
  • Reference Letters clearly stating your duties
  • Transcripts (Certified), SAQA (Verification of foreign qualifications)
  • Current/Updated CV (Resume)
    Passport – Copy of your passport. Please confirm your names correctly as per the sequence in your passport (First name, Middle names, Last name (Surname)
startup, business, people

Some highlights of the critical skills work category include:

It allows you to get a work visa before a job offer. It allows you to enter and stay in South Africa for 12 months to secure a Job. Is based on a well-researched list of occupations that are badly needed in South Africa, increasing your chances of finding a job. No restrictions in terms of the numbers in each listed occupation. No department of labor recommendation so quicker turnaround times. Deals with the professional bodies specific to the occupation. Can be a pathway to permanent residence immediately as well an immediate 5-year working visa. Less obligation on employers


PLEASE NOTE: The provision of such written confirmation of critical skills by the body does not provide any guarantee whatsoever of a Critical Skills Work Visa or Permanent Residence Permit being issued by the South African Department of Home Affairs and the body gives no such assurances.