South Africa went from the general ward into the ICU – Edward Kieswetter (Sars)
Covid-19 is giving South Africa a chance to rebuild the economy in a way that ensures more equal opportunities, South African Revenue Service (Sars) Commissioner Edward Kieswetter told Fin24 on Wednesday.
Kieswetter warned against “business as usual” once the crisis has passed – things weren’t even remotely fine before Covid-19.
"Covid-19 is an opportunity to reimagine a new economy, more relevant to the SA we dream of,” said Kieswetter.
He said Sars is using this moment to leap into the future.
“This is an ideal opportunity for new business models and for virtualising the workplace.”
Lester Kiewit (in for Kieno Kammies) interviewed Kieswetter.
We were on a slippery slope even before Covid… retrenchments in double-digits… it was like taking a patient from the ward into the ICU…Edward Kieswetter, Commissioner - South African Revenue Service
… extreme jump to the left in order to manage the mortality outcomes, which is understandable…Edward Kieswetter, Commissioner - South African Revenue Service
Not all businesses will return… in a country with 10 million people out of work…Edward Kieswetter, Commissioner - South African Revenue Service
We’ve been talking about the Fourth Industrial Revolution as if it’s something that’ll happen in the future…Edward Kieswetter, Commissioner - South African Revenue Service
We’re still one of the most unequal societies… do you want to go back to that? … Use this crisis to reimagine our public health facilities, our housing shortfall, our woefully inadequate public transport, our spatial arrangement…Edward Kieswetter, Commissioner - South African Revenue Service
Increasing tax rates… we’ve reached the limit… increasing rates will likely harm our economy… In fact, we should be looking at reducing corporate income tax… We must broaden the tax base…Edward Kieswetter, Commissioner - South African Revenue Service
Sars was one of the casualties of State Capture… Even after a year of hard work - our capabilities are sub-optimal… We must improve compliance… that’s our real day job… to ensure the revenue that is due is collected… We must earn the trust of society. We cannot demand or expect it… We must act beyond reproach!Edward Kieswetter, Commissioner - South African Revenue Service
We’ve seen an improvement on our VAT refund cycle… If a small business is unfairly penalised, contact us! … Our refund pay-outs are on track… we’ve already paid out R37 billion of refunds during the Covid period…Edward Kieswetter, Commissioner - South African Revenue Service
Listen to the interview in the audio below.
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