January 29, 2024

Private Clients

Annual Allowances Explained

Annual Allowances Explained

Annual allowances explained

At the start of each new calendar year, South African residents may avail themselves of new annual allowances granted by the SARB under Exchange Control regulations. These allowances expire at the end of each calendar year on 31 December.

We’ve put together an overview of these for you below:

1. R1 million Single Discretionary Allowance (SDA)

South African resident individuals are granted an annual Single Discretionary Allowance (SDA) of R1 million per calendar year by the SARB, to externalise funds for any legal purpose. The SDA does not require foreign tax clearance (AIT) from SARS. The annual R1 million Single Discretionary Allowance applies to all South African residents over the age of 18 who hold a green bar-coded ID book or the new ID card.

2. R10 million Foreign Capital Allowance (FCA)   

In addition to the SDA, South African resident individuals can also avail themselves of a Foreign Capital Allowance (FCA) of up to R10 million per calendar year. Unlike the SDA, the FCA requires foreign tax clearance (AIT) from SARS which is valid for 12 months. 

AITs (Approval for International Transfers) are valid for a year after being issued, but your allowances are based on the calendar year. To make the most of your allowance, we recommend transferring any remaining funds from your valid AIT before the end of the current calendar year. Any unused portion will be deducted from your allocation for the following year.

3. Special Approval Applications

If you want to externalise an amount greater than your annual allowances in the same calendar year, you can apply to the SARB for approval to do so. The special approval remains valid for 1 year and an extension may be applied for if required.

Currency Partners would like to offer you the opportunity to request a complimentary foreign tax clearance (AIT) in respect of the annual Foreign Capital Allowance (FCA) for 2024.  Applying now, puts you in a position to transact quickly at any time in the future, so you don’t miss out on a favourable exchange rate.  

Did you know?

Our tax specialists will handle your application as a complimentary benefit of our currency transfer service and as South Africa’s biggest specialist foreign exchange provider, Currency Partners can give you access to the best pricing and service available in the market.

Please contact us on +27 21 203 0081 or email enquiries@currencypartners.co.za for more information and assistance.


  • Foreign tax clearance (AIT) is valid for 12 months from date of approval, so applying now means you can draw down on the balance over the next 12 months.
  • You do not need to redeem your investments and have the “funds reflecting” in an account to apply for clearance – one can apply using the investment statements whilst remaining invested so that your money can keep working for you.
We look forward to hearing from you and saving you money on the exchange rates.