Draft Taxation Laws Amendment Bill 2019 published for comment

draft tlab
23 Jul 2019

The 2019 Draft Taxation Laws Amendment Bill (Draft TLAB) and the 2019 Draft Tax Administration Laws Amendment Bill (Draft TALAB) have been published for comment.

According to a national treasury statement, the 2019 Draft TLAB and the 2019 Draft TALAB provide the necessary legislative amendments required to implement the more complex tax announcements made in Chapter 4 and Annexure C of the 2019 Budget Review.

The proposed amendments will require extensive public consultation as they do not deal with a “simple change in a rate or threshold of a tax”.

Workshops on the draft legislation are also in the pipeline.

In addition, both finance committees in parliament will call for comment on the draft bills at some stage prior to tabling in parliament.

Treasury has also called for comment on the 2019 Draft Rates and Monetary Amounts and Amendment of Revenue Laws Bill (Draft Rates Bill), first published on Budget Day in February 2019.

The 2019 Draft TLAB focuses on the following key tax proposals announced in the 2019 Budget Review:

  • Aligning the effective date of tax neutral transfers between retirement funds with the effective date of annuitisation for provident funds
  • Adjusting the withholding tax treatment of surviving spouses’ pensions to limit tax debts on assessment
  • Addressing abusive arrangements aimed at avoiding the anti-dividend stripping provisions
  • Clarifying the interaction between corporate reorganisation rules and other provisions of the Income Tax Act
  • Refining the tax treatment of long-term insurers
  • Refining investment criteria and anti-avoidance measures for the Special Economic Zone regime
  • Limiting the allowable deduction for investors investing in a venture capital company
  • Reviewing the controlled foreign company comparable tax exemption and addressing the circumvention of the anti-diversionary rules
  • Reviewing section 72 of the VAT Act

The 2019 Draft TALAB gives effect to the following key tax proposals:

  • Removal of requirement to submit a declaration to a regulated intermediary in respect of tax free investments
  • Authorisation for the Commissioner to prescribe rules relating to the making of advance foreign currency payments
  • Alignment of time limitations on requesting refunds
  • Model mandatory disclosure rules and non-compliance penalties
  • Tax compliance certificates

Highlights in the 2019 Draft Rates Bill include changes in rates and monetary thresholds to the personal income tax tables, adjustments to the eligible income bands that qualify for the employment tax incentive and increases in excise duties for alcohol and tobacco.

Comment on the draft bills is invited until 23 August 2019.

Meanwhile, the Accounting Standards Board has, in Government Gazette 42584, called for comment on two Exposure Drafts (ED):

  • ED 176 Proposed Improvements to the Standards of GRAP (2019). Comment due by 31 October 2019.
  • ED 177 Proposed Transitional Provisions for the Standard of GRAP on Financial Instruments (Revised in 2019). Comment due by 29 November 2019.

In Notice 997, the South African Revenue Service (SARS) has published the 5th iteration of its Promotion of Access to Information Act Manual.

The Manual points out that secrecy provisions in SARS legislation ensures that taxpayer and trader information is confidential and is not subject to disclosure, except under limited circumstances.

“The Promotion of Access to Information Act 2 of 2000 (the Act) reinforces the confidentiality of this information by providing that it must not be disclosed in terms of the Act, except to the person to whom it relates or that person’s authorised representative.”

The Manual sets out the procedures for making a request for any of SARS’s records or information and the procedures for lodging an internal appeal in terms of the act.

SARS’s records include taxpayer information, SARS confidential information, personnel information and business records.

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(This article is provided for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. For more information on the topic, please contact the author/s or the relevant provider.)
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