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Prenisha Govender

Prenisha Govender is an Associate in Baker McKenzie's Johannesburg office.

In terms of both market value and volume, South Africa is reported to be one of the top two markets for cryptocurrencies in Africa, alongside Nigeria. It was therefore only a matter of time before the South African Revenue Service joined the likes of the Internal Revenue Service in the United States and Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs in the United Kingdom in cracking down on cryptocurrency traders and establishing appropriate tax frameworks.

South Africa recently approved a tax on exported chrome, with further details still to be announced. The ferrochrome ore industry has been severely threatened in recent years, mostly due to increases in electricity tariffs. Some industry stakeholders have suggested that a special electricity tariff would be a better way to support the ailing industry, others have stated that the challenges mean they would not be able to sustain themselves, even after tax relief. And others have welcomed the reprieve that an export tax would provide. As a result, key industry stakeholders have expressed interest in collectively undertaking research to explore a more viable and consolidated approach to support the industry, but there have been difficulties from a competition law perspective.

The South Africa Revenue Service has published a Notice clarifying the customs declaration process under section 64D of the Customs and Excise Act. The Notice outlines the conditions under which bonded goods must be imported into South Africa. Prenisha Govender, Associate in the Tax Practice at Baker McKenzie in Johannesburg, provides the key points.

The National Treasury in South Africa has implemented a deferment of excise duties in respect of payments, for excise compliant businesses in the tobacco and alcohol industries. This is due to the detrimental effect of lockdown restrictions on the sale of alcoholic beverages and tobacco products. Virusha Subban, Partner and Head of Tax, and Prenisha Govender, Associate in the Tax Practice at Baker McKenzie in Johannesburg, outline the key details of these deferrals.