South Africa is reportedly considering a legal change for drivers of South African-registered commercial vehicles, a move that will be a blow to many foreign drivers.
The proposed legislation will end recognition of driving licences for some classes obtained in foreign countries and insist that all licences for such drivers must be obtained in South Africa.
The South African Road Freight Association sees this as a back-door route to preventing foreigners from being employed by South African freight companies.
Resultantly, many foreign drivers were killed by angry South African nationals.
While the proposed changes do not ban foreigners, they would, if enacted, require foreigners to undergo the long and expensive process of training and testing to get the South African licences, and that would probably require, at least for the testing stage, that they were legal residents of South Africa.
That condition might be difficult to meet for some since residence requires the employment that comes once the licences have been obtained.
Many South African transport companies are happy to hire foreigners, especially for vehicles travelling outside the country, since there are a limited number of South African drivers prepared to undertake these long trips.
At the moment, the special permits needed in South Africa for commercial vehicles can be issued to those who produce recognised foreign drivers licences, along with other requirements.
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