Countries that allow Dual Citizenship with South Africa

If you want to obtain a second passport to improve your studies, work and travel options overseas, there are many countries that allow dual citizenship with South Africa.

Countries that allow Dual Citizenship with South Africa

Dual citizenship or dual nationality gives you the opportunity to be a national of more than one country at the same time. But before you apply to register as a citizen of another country, there are certain specific rules you must follow as a South African citizen in order to retain your South African citizenship.

We explain the important processes involved below;

South Africans are permitted to acquire multiple citizenships, under certain conditions. You must apply for and be granted permission by the South African Department of Home Affairs for retention of your South African citizenship before attaining that citizenship. If you do not do this before receiving the citizenship, you can automatically lose your South African citizenship.

When permission has been granted, you will be given a “Letter of Retention”. This rule applies to all South African citizens aged 18 years or older. Those who are under the age of 18 years are exempt and are not required to apply for dual citizenship, as long as they acquire the foreign citizenship before their 18th birthday.

In some instances where you are deemed a citizen of a foreign country at birth, this means you are able to apply for a passport of that country and not have to register, so you do not need to apply for retention of South African citizenship at all.

When you have dual citizenship, you are supposed to use your South African passport to enter and exit South Africa. It is considered a criminal offense to use another passport to enter the country if you are a South African passport holder. Outside of the country, you can use your foreign or South African nationality and passport freely.

How to apply for retention of South African citizenship

You must complete the DHA-175 and DHA BI-1664 forms and submit these to the Home Affairs office, along with a letter from the Consulate or Embassy proving you have not already obtained citizenship.

Can you resume your South African citizenship after you have lost it?

Even if you have lost your South African citizenship, you have not lost your right to permanent residence in South Africa. Should you return to South Africa permanently, you will be able to apply for the resumption of your South African citizenship from within South Africa.

If you obtain your South African citizenship through this method, you will gain full residency rights.

You will be given a new ID number and your voting rights will not be reinstated.

So which countries allow dual citizenship with South Africa?

The countries that allow dual citizenship with South Africa are;

  • United States
  • Malta
  • United Kingdom
  • Malawi
  • New Zealand
  • Canada
  • Angola
  • Australia
  • Switzerland
  • Belize
  • Algeria
  • Pakistan
  • Brazil
  • Nigeria
  • Bangladesh
  • Russia
  • Mexico
  • Philippines
  • Egypt
  • Turkey
  • Germany
  • France
  • Italy
  • South Korea
  • Spain
  • Argentina
  • Poland
  • Peru
  • Chile
  • Romania
  • Syria
  • Benin
  • Bolivia
  • Belgium
  • Czech Republic
  • Greece
  • Portugal
  • Sweden
  • Hungary
  • Israel
  • Serbia
  • Bulgaria
  • Denmark
  • Finland
  • Norway
  • Costa Rica
  • Ireland
  • Panama
  • Croatia
  • Jamaica
  • Armenia
  • Albania
  • Slovenia
  • Latvia
  • Cyprus
  • Luxembourg
  • Iceland
  • Vanuatu
  • Barbados
  • Antigua And Barbuda

However, Malaysia, China, Andorra, Singapore, Azerbaijan, Oman, Bahamas, Japan, Bahrain, Botswana, Belarus and Bhutan are some of the countries that don’t allow dual citizenship.


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