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South Africans Must Use e-Filing For Excise Duties

by Lorys Charalambous, Tax-News.com, Cyprus

15 July 2013


The South African Revenue Service (SARS) has published a government notice providing for all excise duties to be submitted on eFiling with immediate effect, although manual submissions will also be accepted for a period of three months from July 11, 2013. Thereafter all submissions must be done through eFiling only.

Excise duties and levies are imposed mostly on high-volume daily consumable products (for example, petroleum and alcohol and tobacco products) as well as certain non-essential or luxury items (such as, electronic equipment and cosmetics).

There are also environmental levies on products such as certain types of plastic bags; electricity generation, using non-renewable or environmentally hazardous fuels; non energy-saving light bulbs; and motor vehicle carbon dioxide emission levels.

The primary function of the duties and levies is to ensure a constant stream of government revenue, with a secondary function of discouraging consumption of certain products harmful to human health or to the environment, and the total revenue generated by these duties and levies amounts to approximately 10 percent of the total revenue received by SARS.

Relevant South African entities must license with SARS Excise before they start to manufacture or otherwise deal in any of those products on which the applicable excise duty and/or levy has not yet been paid. The duties and levies are self-assessed by the client per periodic excise return and, depending on the product, paid to SARS on either a monthly or quarterly basis.

TAGS: South Africa | environment | compliance | tax | tax compliance | energy | excise duty | tax rates | Africa

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