PayPal.com accounts are available in South Africa but users in the country are not allowed to receive money into a Pay Pal account online. South Africans may however spend money from their paypal account at various ecommerce online stores that accept payments via the Internet. One thing that a South African citizen may not use an account for at the moment is to transfer funds from their PayPal account into a local SA bank account. Whether this will change or not in the future is anybody’s guess.
South Africans with a PayPal.com account are blocked by the SA Reserve Bank from transfering funds into their personal or business bank accounts because the Reserve Bank cannot then control the account users. The Reserve bank views a Pay Pal account as an illegal offshore account because a person is able to receive money into it and then spend it again without the cash ever entering South Africa, which is a violation of the Foreign Exchange Act.
As South Africans are not yet shopping online and using credit cards on ecommerce websites as a means of buying goods quite as much as is happening in the UK or USA there is not a lot of fuss over this problem. Also, because of Pay Pal not allowing SA citizens to transfer money into a local bank account there are now a few alternative online payment gateways available that enable a South African business to receive payments on their websites for products and services. Here’s hoping that one day in the future online businesses will be able to make use of PayPal.com in South Africa as a means of accepting credit card and other electronic payments online.