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South Africa Sees Improved Tax Compliance

Monday, August 9, 2010

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) received 23% more individual income tax returns in the first month of the 2010 tax season than during the same month last year.

SARS received over 761,000 tax returns from individual taxpayers in July this year, compared to only 585,000 individual tax returns in July 2009. Out of the total this year, electronically submitted returns totalled 746,500, or some 98%. More than 600,000 of total returns have already been assessed.

The SARS’ Commissioner, Oupa Magashula, attributed the successful start of the filing season to an improved compliance culture by taxpayers who have noticed the benefits of filing their returns early in the filing period. These benefits include the faster turn-around times in assessing returns and quicker refunds to taxpayers.

“I would like to thank all taxpayers who have filed early and trust that other taxpayers will also heed our call to file now and avoid the congestion that occurs as the various deadlines approach,” Magashula said.

Taxpayers were reminded that the deadline for postal submissions (paper tax returns) for provisional and non-provisional taxpayers is September 30. The deadline for electronic submissions through SARS branches and e-filing for non-provisional taxpayers and trusts is November 26, and for provisional taxpayers and trusts is January 31, 2011.