Western Cape Information

Western Cape

Find out more about the region which homes the “Mother City”

Foreign languages used to service international business

The recommended languages in this group other than English are German, Dutch and French. In the Western Cape in 2011, around 7114 citizens recorded their birth country as Germany (9th) and around 3280 were from the Netherlands (13th). Italy was ranked 19th with 1897 citizens recorded and Portugal was ranked 21st with 1798 (StatsSA: Census data).

The Department of Home Affairs also granted 188 permanent residency permits to Germans (9th largest recipient) in 2013 (65 in 2012 and 263 in 2011). South African permanent residency was also given to 38 Italians and 32 Dutch in 2013 (DHA, 2013). The Department of Home Affairs also granted 2362 temporary residency permits to Germans in 2013, 1050 to the Dutch and 963 to the French (DHA, 2013).

There are also schools in the Western Cape that teach in French and German as well as learning centres that teach foreign languages. The French school completed a R19m investment in 2014 for a pre-primary and primary school campus. The French School in total hosts over 400 students from twenty-eight different nationalities, 41% of the students being non-French among which 25% are South African. The German International School Cape Town offers German-speaking children a Primary and Secondary Education in accordance with German curricula. At Secondary level, the students are taught bilingually according to South African and German curricula.

UCT and Stellenbosch offer training in Dutch, German and French out of those listed:


Top major cities recommended for potential call center activity

Cape Town

Cape Town is a port city on South Africa’s southwest coast, on a peninsula beneath the imposing Table Mountain. Slowly rotating cable cars climb to the mountain’s flat top, from which there are sweeping views of the city, the busy harbor and boats heading for Robben Island, the notorious prison that once held Nelson Mandela, which is now a living museum.


George is a city in South Africa’s Western Cape, on a coastal stretch known as the Garden Route. It’s known for its golf courses and the George Museum, which has exhibits on the local timber industry. The Outeniqua Transport Museum has steam trains and vintage cars. The Garden Route Botanical Garden features trails and local fynbos plants. The Seven Passes road to Knysna town winds through the Outeniqua Mountains.

Western Cape Population
GDP per Capita
Unemployed Population

Macroeconomic trends & economic dependencies within the next 5 years

 Over the period 2013 to 2018, growth in the Western Cape is expected to average 3.6. Over this period, the strongest annual growth is projected for the construction sector at an estimated 5.1% year-on-year. This is on the back of continued expenditure by the public sector on key economic and social infrastructure initiatives. Finance, insurance, real estate and business services is forecast to be the second fastest growing sector over the period 2013 to 2018 growing by 4.6%, followed by transport, storage and communication growing by 4.3%.

Geo-Political Risks

Despite having strong political institutions, South Africa is struggling from recurrent strikes, which have become the major means of wage setting, and which weaken the outlook for business and raise financing costs.

SA involvement in BRICS – ANC strong ties with Russia – looks like SA will give expansion of nuclear programme to Russia. President Zuma personally negotiated a September framework agreement with Russia “Nuclear projects are very large and can impact international relationships between the associated countries.”

The geopolitical risk of increasing corruption has both the highest likelihood and consequence rating for the entire risk profile. South Africa has steadily been performing worse in Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI), which ranks countries/territories based on how corrupt a country’s public sector is perceived to be. The country is ranked 72nd out of 177 countries surveyed, with a score of 42 out of 100 in the index; this could prove damaging to its reputation. (Transport, Police, Home Affairs etc).

Unemployment rate is around 27%, which translates into approximately 5,2 million unemployed persons.

Over 70% of South African businesses are significantly unprepared for cyber liability risks and are thus considerably underinsured when it comes to managing the financial and legal implications that follow a major cyber breach. South Africa is becoming increasingly exposed to technological risks, especially the escalation in large-scale cyber-attacks coupled with a breakdown of critical information infrastructure and networks.

Apart from the credit rating downgrade of the four largest South African banks, there are also rising concerns about other lenders.

Incidence of data fraud/ theft – leaking of information.

South Africa's Exchange Rates

Rand - Dollar
Rand - Pound
Rand - Euro
Rand - Yen

labor law compliance considerations


Overtime may only be worked by agreement between employer and employee. As per section 9 of the basic conditions of employment Act, the maximum normal working time for an employee is 45 hours per week. This would mean a maximum of nine hours in any day if the employee works for five days or fewer in a week and eight hours in any day if the employee works on more than five days in a week. The employee has the legal right and entitlement to demand payment for overtime worked at the rate of 1,5 times his normal wage rate, or at whatever rate is applicable (not less favourable than the minimum set in the Act). The employee can also enter into an agreement with the employer whereby he can be given time off work instead of payment for overtime worked


Final pay

The following may be included as pay on the final pay slip:

  • Salary
  • Pro-rata leave pay
  • Notice pay (unless notice worked/resigned/summary dismissal)
  • Pro-rata bonus (unless discretionary)
  • Severance pay (at least 1 week per completed year of service).


Notice of Termination

Notice must be given in writing, except when it is given by an illiterate worker. Based on Legislation in Section 37, of the Basic Conditions of Employment Act


Notice Period

Worker employed for

Notice Period

6 months or less

1 week

More than 6 months, but less than 1 year

2 weeks

1 year or more

4 weeks *


* A collective agreement may reduce the 4-week notice period to not less than 2 weeks

current unemployment rates, historical trends and expected steady state rates

call center employee unions

Call centre employees are not currently unionised. We do not foresee this happening in the next 5 years due to various employee wellness programmes introduced by call centres but it remains a possibility in the long term.

Attrition Rate (%)
Attrition Rate (%)
Average Commute Time (Minutes)

public transit system

Upgrades and revitalized public transport systems are being introduced in key nodes across the province in the Integrated Rapid Transit (IRT) project. The City is collaborating with PRASA (railway), Golden Arrow, and taxi associations to integrate the public transport system. The focus is on a BRT system (MyCiti Bus) which is easily accessible and effective public transport.

The expansion will connect the CBD to the Mitchells Plain and Khayelitsha suburbs by 2014 through to 2015, connecting 75-80% of the entire Cape Town population with the bus service. The BRT project is planned to be complete within 10 years with 100 new buses and 377 stops. In terms of infrastructure 64% of the province’s roads can be categorized as good to very good (Invest in Cape Town, 2014).

colleges and universities, annual graduation rates and volumes by degree type

  • University of Cape Town
  • Cape Penisinsula University of Technology
  • University of the Western Cape
  • University of Stellenbosch (State)
  • Damelin (2 campuses)
  • Varsity College (Private)


(Institutions providing Fashion and Marketing Degrees excluded)