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BANKS ACT 94 OF 1990

The purpose of the Act is to, inter alia:
  • Provide for the regulation and supervision of the business of public companies taking deposits from the public.
The Act, which has been amended on numerous occasions consists of nine chapters and various regulations thereto, and is the primary legislation governing the regulation and supervision of the activities of banks in South Africa.

Insofar as the Act imposes requirements with which any institution must comply before it may carry on the business of a bank or in the lawful carrying on of the business of a bank, the Act does not apply to the following institutions:

  1. the Reserve Bank;
  2. the Land Bank;
  3. the Development Bank of Southern Africa;
  4. the Corporation for Public Deposits, established by section 2 of the Corporation for Public Deposits Act, 1984 (Act No. 46 of 1984);
  5. the Public Investment Commissioners referred to in section 2 of the Public Investment Commissioners Act, 1984 (Act No. 45 of 1984);
  6. any mutual bank; or
  7. any other institution or body designated by the Minister by notice in the Gazette.
The administration of the Act is fulfilled by the Office for Banks (OFB) which is located at the Reserve Bank. The primary persons responsible for fulfilling the functions and exercising the powers of the OFB are the Registrar and Deputy Registrar of Banks.

The Act provides for the application for authorization to establish a bank (and granting, refusal and/or revocation thereof), the registration (granting, with or without conditions, or refusal thereof) and the cancellation of registration of banks and relevant matters thereto.

The Act furthermore provides for the shareholding in and registration of controlling companies in respect of banks, the functioning of banks and controlling companies with reference to the Companies Act.

The prudential requirements with which banks must comply are provided for and inaddition thereto the provisions relating to the conducting of the business of a bank and the control of certain activities of unregistered persons.

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AA SLAMAT - Attorney-at-Law
B.COM (Law & Economics), LL.B. (Mercantile Law), LL.M. (Commercial Contracts & Commercial Law), RPE 2004 (South African Institute of Financial Markets)

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Email: asl@slamatlaw.co.za | Tel: +27 (0)79 534 5077 | Fax: +27 86 232 7208/9
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