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Moving money into and out of South Africa


This can be tricky due to the complex nature of its foreign exchange regulations. Experience of the system and an understanding of the regulatory requirements is needed for a painless and cost effective experience.


That’s where we come in.


Avoid the mistake that so many people make when unsure of what the correct approach is when moving money out of the country. Turning to your bank for advice or to make large international payments will inevitably result in you getting uncompetitive exchange rates and being charged unnecessary fees.


Unhappy with Banks




What is the best way to move funds out of SA?


Mercury International offers international money transfers for both individuals and businesses alike, at bank-beating rates, zero fees and are on hand to give you an excellent and personalized service.


No more waiting in bank queues or permanently being put on hold - we will deal with the banks for you.


Trading since 2008 and with offices in London, Cape Town and Hong Kong, we are well placed to help make your international payments as quick, seamless and cost effective as possible.


The Nitty Gritty:


How much can I transfer?


In some cases a tax clearance certificate from the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) will be required, this will depend on how much you intend to transfer in a calendar year and whether you live in South Africa or not.




You can transfer a total of R11 million per calendar year:


  • R1 million individual discretionary allowance (no tax clearance required)
  • R10 million foreign investment allowance (tax clearance required - SARS)


Only tax-payers over the age of 18 who are South African residents are eligible for this allowance. It is mandatory to have a tax clearance certificate that is valid for 12 months to take advantage of the R10 million allowance.


Mercury International will assist you in obtaining SARS tax clearances should you require it.


If you are looking to exceed the amounts above, you will need to apply to the SARB for a special dispensation. These applications can be complex, but our team can guide you through the process.



Allowance Details:


Individual Discretionary Allowance of up to R1 million per calendar year 

– This allowance can be used for any legal purposes overseas and includes any travel expenses from South Africa in a foreign currency (eg. credit card spend while travelling). No foreign tax clearance required.


Individual Foreign Capital/Investment Allowance of up to R10 million per calendar year

– Foreign Tax Clearance must be obtained from SARS for transfers under the FCA/FIA. Foreign Tax Clearance Certificates (FTCCs) for amounts up to R10 million per calendar year can be applied for with SARS (typically within 1-3 working days) and once issued, the certificate is valid for 12 months.


SARB Special Approval Applications 

– In order to move more than R10 million, a letter of compliance must be applied for from SARS. Once this letter is received, an application must be made to the SARB for a special approval to be granted before being able to move the amount/s that exceeds the annual allowance.  There is no restriction on the number of applications that can be made or on the size of the approval needed (no exit levies or penalties payable).


Emigration Allowances 

– This is currently set at R20 million per family unit.


Non-resident transfers 

– We can assist with Non-Resident Accounts and any exchange control applications for our clients who live outside of South Africa.
















Issued by Mercury Foreign Exchange Limited


Mercury FX is regulated by both the South African Reserve Bank and the Financial Services Board (FSP No. 46875) and adhere to strict compliance, disclosure and anti-money laundering requirements. All transactions are executed in the clients name with an Authorised Dealer.


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