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As of 15 August 2008 a new assessment process will come into effect to expedite the registration of foreign engineering practitioners holding qualifications unknown to ECSA.

South Africa has recently seen an increase in the number of engineering practitioners from abroad seeking employment in our country and therefore ECSA is experiencing an increase in the number of such engineering practitioners seeking registration.

Foreign engineering practitioners cannot qualify for a work permit without registering at ECSA and applicants are often disappointed when they do not receive approval for the category they initially wished to register for. However, the majority of these applicants do not hold engineering qualifications that are known to ECSA and very often these applicants would seek registration in an inappropriate category.

A qualification accredited by ECSA serves as a benchmark for registration in the appropriate category, i.e. engineer, technologist or technician. Holding an accredited qualification is a pre-requisite to apply in a specific category. When a foreign engineering practitioner who holds a qualification unknown to ECSA applies for registration, a proper assessment of the qualification has to be done before the applicant can be registered. The assessing panel will then be in a position to immediately determine the qualification equivalent and advise on the category of registration that the applicant should apply for. Applying for the correct category saves a considerable amount of time from application to registration. This will also assist prospective employers of foreign engineering practitioners to determine an applicant’s level of competence.

Assessment of “unknown” qualifications and registration of engineering practitioners from abroad will follow a separate process to the usual registration processes.

This new assessment system will only be applicable to such qualifications not covered under the following existing mutual agreements that ECSA has entered into:
  • Institute of Civil Engineers, London,
  • Engineers Ireland
  • Persons registered on the Engineers Mobility Forum International Register
Applicants covered under the Washington, Dublin and Sydney Accords

The above agreements are based on international accreditation of engineering qualifications​