What are “essential goods and services?”

Guidelines to Freight Logistics operations under the conditions of the Government Notice issued by the Minister of Corporate Governance and Traditional Affairs on 25 March 2020.

At all times it is prudent to read this simplified document with the Notice as published by the Minister. For ease of reference and understanding, the Association has highlighted the following:

Essential goods:

  1. Food
    • Any food product including non-alcoholic beverages
    • Animal food
    • Chemicals, packaging and ancillary products used in the production of any food product
  2. Cleaning and Hygiene Products
    • Toilet paper, sanitary pads, sanitary tampons, condoms
    • Hand sanitiser, disinfectants, soap, alcohol for industrial use, household cleaning products, personal protective equipment
    • Chemicals, packaging and ancillary products used in the production of any of the above
  3. Medical
    • Medical and hospital supplies, equipment and personal protective equipment
    • Chemicals, packaging and ancillary products used in the production of any of the above
  4. Fuel including coal and gas
  5. Basic goods including airtime and electricity

Essential services (impact on transport logistics / operations highlighted)

  1. Medical, Health (including Mental Health), Laboratory and Medical services;
  2. Disaster Management, Fire Prevention, Fire Fighting and Emergency services;
  3. Financial services necessary to maintain the functioning of the banking and payments environment, including the JSE and similar exchanges, as well as Insurance services;
  4. Production and sale of the goods listed in “Goods”, above;
  5. Grocery stores, including spaza shops;
  6. Electricity, water, gas and fuel production, supply and maintenance;
  7. Critical jobs for essential government services as determined by Head of National or Provincial Departments in accordance with the guidance by the DPSA, including Social Grant Payments;
  8. Birth and death certificates, and replacement identification documents;
  9. Essential municipal services;
  10. Care services and social relief of distress provided to older persons, the mentally ill, persons with disabilities, the sick, and children;
  11. Funeral services, including mortuaries;
  12. Wildlife Management, Anti-poaching, Animal Care and Veterinary services;
  13. Newspaper, broadcasting and telecommunication infrastructure and services;
  14. Production and sale of any chemicals, hygiene products, pharmaceuticals for the medical or retail sector;
  15. Cleaning, sanitation, sewerage, waste and refuse removal services;
  16. Services related to the essential functioning of courts, judicial officers, the Master of the High Court, Sheriffs and legal practitioners required for those services;
  17. Essential SARS services defined by the Commissioner of SARS;
  18. Police, peace officers, traffic officers, military medical personnel and soldiers, correctional services officials and traffic management services;
  19. Postal services and courier services related to the transport of medical products;
  20. Private security services;
  21. Air-traffic Navigation, Civil Aviation Authority, Cargo Shipping and dockyard services;
  22. Gold, gold refinery, coal and essential mining;
  23. Accommodation used for persons rendering essential services, quarantine, isolation and the lockdown;
  24. Production, manufacturing, supply, logistics, transport, delivery, critical maintenance and repair in relation to the rendering of essential services including components and equipment;
  25. Transport services for persons rendering essential services and goods, and transportation of patients;
  26. Services rendered by the Executive, members of Parliament, Members of the Provincial Legislature, Members of Local Councils, the Judiciary, traditional leaders and National Office Bearers of Political Parties represented in Parliament;
  27. Commissioners of the South African Human Rights Commission, Gender Commission, and the Commission for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities, and the Public Protector and Deputy Public Protector; and
  28. Transport and logistics in respect of essential goods as set out “Goods” above to neighbouring countries.

How do we perform an essential service?

Essential services can only be performed under the authority of a “permit”. The permit to perform an essential service must be issued by the “head of an institution”.
Employees involved in the performing of essential services must be designated in writing by the head of an institution, on a form (permit) that corresponds substantially with the example in this document.

What is an “institution”?

It is any company/organization/institution engaged in the supply or distribution of essential goods or services – including all aspects of freight logistics.

Who is the “head of an institution”?

This individual is the chief executive officer (CEO) or the equivalent of a chief executive officer in a private company. In other words – this person will have specific powers and authority as conferred by a Board or in terms of appointment.

Can I (as company CEO) issue permits?

YES – the head of an institution must determine essential services to be performed by his or her institution as well as the staff who will perform those services (you are allowed to delegate this function in line with the complexity and size of the business operation).

Restrictions on the movement of persons (my Employees) and goods

How do my employees get to work during the lockdown?

Employees who are employed in an essential service (as listed earlier) will not be confined to their place of residence strictly for the purpose of performing an essential service, obtaining essential goods or services.

Must I cease operations?

YES – all businesses and other entities shall cease operations except any business or entity involved in the manufacturing, supply, or provision of essential goods or services.

Are my Employees subject to any checks?

Yes – any person performing an essential service, obtaining essential goods may be subjected to screening for COVlD-19 by an enforcement officer.

Can I move essential goods through a border?

Yes – all borders will allow the transportation of fuel and essential goods.

Can I transport Employees to place of work?

Yes – when an Employee rendering essential services are unable to travel to and from the place of residence to the place of employment, the Employer must make the necessary transport arrangements.

Important: no more than 50% of the licensed capacity of the vehicle may be exceeded and all directions in respect of hygienic conditions and the limitation of exposure to persons with COVID-19 must be adhered to.



Click on the links below to download the permit form in various formats.