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South Africa

In South Africa, microfinance regulation is activity-based rather than institution-based. For the most part, microfinance consists of consumer-lending provided by banks and micro-lenders, and micro-insurance – particularly for burial costs. Only banks may accept deposits and all banks are regulated by the South African Reserve Bank (SARB), (though there are certain enumerated exceptions). Micro-lenders may take forms such as NGOs, companies, cooperatives (including village financial service cooperatives), corporations, or trusts. Credit providers, including banks, are regulated and must register with the National Credit Regulator (NCR), which technically falls under the umbrella of the Department of Trade and Industry. Small credit providers, that conduct under a certain amount of transactions, or less than a certain volume of business per year, are exempt from registering. These include institutions such as stokvels (savings clubs),  rotating savings and credit associations (ROSCAs), mashonisas (small cash-lenders) and burial societies.

Also playing a role in the financial services industry is the Financial Services Board, which oversees the non-banking financial services industry by regulating all investment products and also provides financial education. Finally, regulations pertaining to money laundering are promulgated by the Financial Intelligence Centre.

mix-market

Regulators

Microfinance & Banking

Consumer Protection

Branchless Banking