Guinness PRO14 organisers have confirmed that they'll operate dual tournaments in the upcoming Rainbow Cup.
They say all options were "explored and exhausted" but travel won't be possible between South Africa and Europe.
South Africa is currently on the red list for entry into Ireland and the U-K.
Teams from Ireland, Italy, Scotland and Wales will now compete in a "northern" Rainbow Cup.
While South African teams, the Sharks, Stormers, Lions and Bulls will play a separate competition against each other.