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We’ve put together a handy flowchart to help you work out how you can best move your retirement savings out of South Africa. There are many ways this can be done; and if you’re interested in doing so, we recommend you consult the diagram below and give us a call when you’re ready.

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Are you a South African living abroad?

There are literally hundreds of thousands of South Africans living abroad. Many of these expats have settled permanently in their new homes, but may have left retirement annuities, pension funds or other retirement policies in South Africa.

The good news is that there are many ways that you can get your retirement annuity funds out of South Africa and to wherever you want them to be.

Follow this handy flow chart below to get started.

Financial emigration from South Africa decision tree

Do you need to financially emigrate?

Depending on your circumstances, and what kind of retirement savings and products you hold, you may have to financially emigrate from South Africa.

Financial emigration is a process whereby you apply to the South African Reserve Bank to change your residence status to that of a non-resident. You can only make this application with the SARB if you intend on emigrating indefinitely.

Remember: Changing your status with the SARB does not revoke your South African citizenship. You may return to South Africa one day should your circumstances change. At such a time you can make another application with the SARB to revoke your emigrant status should you choose to live in South Africa.


For any help in retrieving your South African retirement savings give our financial emigration team a call today on +27 (0) 21 657 2133. Alternatively, you can send us an email on safe@sableinternational.comand we’ll get back to you.

We are a professional services company that specialises in cross-border financial and immigration advice and solutions.

Our teams in the UK, South Africa and Australia can ensure that when you decide to move overseas, invest offshore or expand your business internationally, you'll do so with the backing of experienced local experts.