Minister Tito Mboweni turned a deaf ear to the tobacco industry’s desperate calls to not increase the interest on tobacco from their current level. Photo: AFP

CAPE TOWN – Finance Minister Tito Mboweni turned a deaf ear to the tobacco industry’s desperate calls to not increase the interest on tobbacco from their current level.

The minister, however, announced that there would be a special unit focused on tax evasion in order to ensure maximum tax revenue is realised.

“Fiscal prudence requires some tax changes. We propose additional revenue measures of R15 billion in 2019/20. There will be a slight upward adjustment of the tax-free threshold for personal income taxes, with no change in the current personal income tax brackets. Together these will raise R12.8 billion.

Madam Speaker, excise duties on alcohol and tobacco will be increased, as follows:

  • The excise duty on a can of beer goes up by 12 cents to R1.74
  • A 750ml bottle of wine will have an excise duty of R3.15, which is 22 cents more
  • The duty on a 750ml bottle of sparkling wine goes up by 84 cents to R10.16
  • The duty on a bottle of whiskey will go up by R4.54 to R65.84
  • A pack of 20 cigarettes goes up by R1.14 cents to R16.66
  • The excise duty on a typical cigar will go up by about 64 cents to R7.80
  • There will be no change to the excise duty on sorghum beer
  • Fuel levies will increase by 29 cents per litre for petrol and 30 cents per litre for diesel

The Black Tobacco Farmers Association (BTFA) called for government to keep excise taxes at their current level, which it said was inspired by the current incapacity by the SA Revenue Service (Sars) to effectively tackle the illicit trade of cigarettes in order to protect farmers from a threat of job losses.

BUSINESS REPORT ONLINE