SARS undershoots revenue target by R0.7bn

Cape Town - The taxman collected R1.216trn in revenue for the 2017/18 financial year - R0.7bn or 0.06% lower than the R1.217trn target set by National Treasury.

Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene made the announcement at a briefing on the preliminary results at South African Revenue Service (SARS) headquarters in Pretoria on Tuesday morning. Acting commissioner Mark Kingon also delivered an address.

According to SARS, R1.451trn was collected and refunds amounted to R234.3bn, bringing the net figure to R1.216trn. Revenue represents growth of 6.3% or R72.4bn.

“Well done to SARS and the people of South Africa who made this possible,” Nene said of the results.  

“This revenue injection represents money that comes from ordinary, hard-working South Africans and demonstrates our resilience as a nation to overcome obstacles and challenges, and our commitment to protect and deepen our democracy.”

Nene explained that revenue collection is driven by the state of the economy, fiscal policy and administrative efficiency. The performance of any tax administration is driven by consumer confidence, tax morality and the credibility of the tax administration, he said.

Between December 2017 and February 2018 monthly revenue growth rates accelerated between 9.5% and 15.5%.

The strengthening of the growth rate is attributed to an improvement in business confidence to levels last seen in 2015, resulting in improved profit outlook and hence provisional payments, said Nene.

“The stronger currency towards the latter part of 2017 assisted companies with imports, which benefitted our trade taxes,” he added.

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