The Labour Relations Act, No 66 of 1995 (LRA), in s95 sets out requirements for the registration of trade unions. 

In terms of the LRA, a trade union may apply for registration if it has:

(i) adopted a name and constitution that meets the requirements in the LRA;

(ii) has an address in South Africa, and;

(iii) is independent.

Trade unions are not required to register however for trade unions to enjoy certain rights in the LRA like organisational and collective bargaining rights, they must be registered with the Department of Labour.

On 30 September 2017, the Department of Labour published a list of all registered trade unions as at 30 September 2017. The list sets out 191 registered trade unions. It also provides useful contact information including the date of registration, telephone numbers and addresses.

The list can be accessed on the department of Labour’s Website.