SARS Collects R2 Trillion In Taxes

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South Africa’s tax authority, SARS has revealed its final revenue collection for the 2022/23 financial year. This results reflected a significant growth trajectory over the past few years.


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The South African Revenue Service (SARS) has collected a record-breaking gross amount of R2.067 trillion in tax revenue for the 2022/2023 financial year. This is a 9.7% increase from the 2021/22 tax year.

“For the first time in history, the South African Revenue Service (SARS) has exceeded the R2 trillion collective in gross revenue,” said SARS Commissioner Edward Kieswetter.

Speaking on the reported revenue outcomes for the 2022/23 financial on Monday (3 April 2023) Commissioner Kieswetter revealed that the net collection after a payment of R381.1 billion in refunds was R1.686 trillion.

This represents a year-on-year growth of 7.86% or R123 billion more than last year against a nominal gross domestic product (GDP) growth of around 5.8%. This means that SARS has collected 99.7% of the challenge set by the Minister of Finance in his February Budget statement.

In comparison to the 2022 revenue outcomes, SARS said that growth was recorded in all tax types. The outcomes were as follows:

  • Personal income tax (PIT) growing 8.3% to R601.7bn
  • Company income tax (CIT) growing by 7.6% to R348.0bn
  • Value-added tax (VAT) growing by 8.0% to R422.2bn
  • Customs and other taxes growing by 27.4% to R73.9bn

Meanwhile, the commissioner noted that load shedding continues to cripple the country’s economy and tax collection as SARS lost an estimated R60 billion in revenue due to power cuts.

Kieswetter said that businesses lost at least 3,000 hours in production time during the year, making it the highest loss in five years.

Tax Refunds

The refunds paid out to taxpayers for the financial year represented an increase of 18.7%, an amount of R321.1bn

“This is the highest quantum of refunds ever paid out, which is up R60 billion from the prior year. Just in Value-Added Tax (VAT) refunds, the amount of R319 billion represents a growth of 21.5% since of the prior year,” the Commissioner said.

Kieswetter said that of the refunds, around R135 billion was returned to medium and small businesses as well as individual taxpayers.

“This is good, as businesses and individuals remain cash strapped. This is good for the economy. In fact, refunds this year represent about 5% of GDP.”

Tax Compliance

The revenue SARS collects annually provides around 90% of the government’s funding, therefore it is crucial that all taxpayers are compliant and pay their taxes on time, said SARS.

To improve and promote compliance, SARS has begun to measure the voluntary compliance as an index.

“An encouraging trend, all be it slow, is the change in trajectory in the compliance index, which has increased from 62.9% to 63.9% in the current year. The voluntary compliance index developed in 2020 in support of our strategic intent, measures the overall compliance behaviour of taxpayers across the compliance value chain and it shows an improvement,” Kieswetter said.

He noted that SARS is currently engaging in an active and extensive tax register exercise to ensure that it broadens the tax base and improves tax compliance.

 

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Taxes

Both individuals and businesses are required to pay tax through on-time submission of returns and payments, to avoid penalties and interest being charged. If you owe money to SARS and need to make payment arrangements.

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