Saturday, January 22, 2022

Home Affairs Minister issues a red flag to investors

The Minister of Labour and home Affairs Edwin Batshu has warned potential investors that having enough money and desire to set up business in Botswana is not a guarantee that they will be issued with work and residence permits.

Batshu issued this warning at the official hand over of the newly constructed Louie Ville Horizons flats in Gaborone, Block 8.

“The desire to set up an investment is not the only requirement for one to be issued a work and residence permit,” he said.

The minister was advising on the Point Based System that his ministry uses to assess applications for work and residence permits. The Point Based system is a systematic and standardised assessment tool used by Regional Immigrants Selection Boards to assess applications for work and residence permits.

Applicants are assessed through a number of criteria and new applicants should score at least sixty percent to qualify while renewals are required to score a minimum fifty percent.

Despite this assessment, Batshu says, a pass rate does not provide automatic granting of work and residence permits.

He says in the interest of security of Botswana and its nationals, there are other considerations to be made so that “we do not find ourselves having admitted those investors with financial muscles but being a threat to our territorial integrity and safety of the nationals as well as the economy.”
He warned that proof of financial investment is therefore not sufficient enough for issuance of permits. He said there are situations where some applicants would be turned down despite having shown their potential to invest and provide work opportunities for Batswana because other conditions have not been met.

Batshu said in situations where an applicant has to appeal to the minister, the minister is guided by the Immigration Act, Section 25(2) which states that, “in determining the appeal, the minister shall regard the following factors; Security considerations; Non availability of suitable skills in the market; Authenticity of information and documents supplied; Character of appellant; Proof of investment capital; and proof of employment offer.” The minister concluded that he was certain that when people understand requirements they are better placed to understand the outcome of their applications.

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