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Starting a Business in South Africa

Find out about the legal requirements for starting a business or setting up as a self-employed worker or freelancer in South Africa...

In recent years South Africa has become a popular place for opening and running businesses. South Africa has a thriving small business sector that contributes substantially to the GDP of the country, and starting a business in South Africa is a straightforward process that has been ranked highly in the global Ease of Doing Business Index.

Who Can Start a Business?

Non-residents must apply for a business permit (self-employed permit) at the Department of Home Affairs. DHA offices are located around the country; the nearest centre can be found on their website. An application is likely to be successful if the applicant meets the following criteria:

  • Has financial backing of R2.5 million
  • Has a detailed business plan identifying customers, suppliers, and marketing strategy
  • Agrees to employee at least five South African residents
  • Undertakes to register with South African Revenue Service

A business permit is generally valid for 24 months, after which time it must be renewed. After five years of continued residence it is possible to apply for a permanent residence permit.

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Welcome to AngloINFO South Africa

Everything you need for life in South Africa - local information you can trust
We have local franchise opportunities in South Africa and around the world

Do you dream of having your own, profitable, easy-to-operate business? AngloINFO might be the solution!

Now in its fifteenth year of business, AngloINFO is the world's leading network of expat information websites - with over three million monthly visitors from around the world.
We have an established network of 88 local websites in 41 countries with many more in development.

Our 54 local franchisees are the key to our success and come from a huge range of backgrounds, ages and nationalities. The common factor is a passion for success.