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Freedom of Trade, Occupation and Profession




Every citizen has the right to choose their trade, occupation or profession freely.

The practice of a trade, occupation or profession may be regulated by law.

 

This concerns the right of a citizen to be economically active, but allows for certain clauses and restrictions to be placed on the right of trade. Though its inclusion was somewhat controversial during the drafting process, this right for South African citizens was kept in the South African Constitution nevertheless.

The right to choose a trade is complicated by various factors, including labour relations, conditions of labour, and the lack of employment opportunities to employ a sufficient number of the workforce. Out of need, many turn to various forms of informal trade, which are not regulated. This includes forced labour, prostitution, transactional sex and human trafficking. Each of these compromises the basic human right of the individual to choose a trade.

 

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