Q. If we buy stock and it is en route from China to our warehouse in South Africa, do we pay zakat on the stock in the shipment even though it is not in our warehouse yet?
A. If the ownership or risk and liability of the stock in the shipment from China to South Africa has transferred to you, then the stock has entered your constructive ownership and forms part of your Zakaatable assets even though the stock may not have entered your warehouse in South Africa yet. As such, Zakaat of 2.5% is payable on the market value of the stock in the shipment on your Zakaat due date.
On the other hand, if the ownership or risk and liability has not transferred to you or it only transfers to you once the shipment reaches your warehouse, Zakaat is not payable on the stock in the shipment until your warehouse takes possession of it.
Allah Ta’ala Knows Best
Mufti Ismaeel Bassa