International students can now join the nearly 245,650 or 40% of South African contact students who have already obtained permits to return to their university campuses.
South African Minister of Higher Education, Science and Innovation Dr Blade Nzimande announced at a virtual news briefing about the further easing of lockdown restrictions that all university students and staff could return to their campuses from 1 October, including those who were outside South Africa.
Returning international students should be able to produce a negative COVID-19 result from a test done in the preceding 72 hours before their arrival in South Africa or they will have to go into quarantine at their own expense for at least 10 days, said Nzimande.
South Africa attracts thousands of international students, in particular from countries in the Southern African Development Community (SADC). Although many of these students left South Africa in March when the national borders closed following the implementation of the hard lockdown, others could not reach the borders of neighbouring countries in time or decided to stay because the lockdown was initially only for three weeks.