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The South African tourism minister has pledged to maintain dialogue with the country’s department of home affairs to assess the impact of new rules for travellers visiting or transiting with children.

The rules, which apply from next Monday, mean that anyone arriving in South Africa and travelling with a child will have to prove parenthood or guardianship.

It applies to all visitors travelling to South Africa or transiting through the country with children under the age of 18.

The rules have been brought in to address the issue of child trafficking on the African continent.

A statement said: “The Minister of Tourism in South Africa, Derek Hanekom, is in ongoing discussions with the Department of Home Affairs and other related bodies to assess the potential impact these new rules may have on international tourism arrivals.”

People travelling with a child who is not biologically theirs must be able to supply copies of the parents’ passports and contact details, as well as a birth certificate for the child and the formal affidavit.

A spokesman for Virgin Atlantic said the new regulations could make matters “incredibly difficult”, the Telegraph reports.