Johannesburg - The exchange control charge imposed on Mark Shuttleworth formed part of a regulatory environment and was not a tax, the Constitutional Court heard on Tuesday.
Jeremy Gauntlett SC, for the SA Reserve Bank (SARB), told the court: “The question is, is it a tax for the purpose of the Constitution or is it a charge that forms part of a regulatory environment?
“Our learned friends (Shuttleworth's counsel) say the former, we say the latter.”
Were it a tax, it would have required an appropriation from Parliament.
Gauntlett said capital outflows were “scary”, as shown for example in 1933 during the Great Depression, where the flight of people and capital posed a serious problem for governments, especially if they happened quickly.