Some US$133 million in tax refunds have been paid out by the South African Revenue Service (SARS) to small businesses and taxpayers in South Africa since the country underwent a 21-day lockdown five days ago, the taxman said on Tuesday.According to SARS, the refunds were made to both business and taxpayers in efforts to balance the financial safety of their staff to ensure that the country’s economy was able to function smoothly.
“SARS is fully aware of the devastating effect on the lives of our people, the risk to businesses and an already struggling economy.
“Consequently, we are committed to maintaining the essential services of SARS to mitigate these unfavourable conditions,” the taxman said.
The refunds comprise payments to large business amounting to $60 million and payments to small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs) amounting to $72 million.
“The payment of refunds represents a major cash injection into the economy at a very critical period. SARS can only do this if taxpayers and traders remain compliant by fulfilling their filing and payment obligations even during the lockdown,” SARS said.