Kapitaaloordragbelasting in Suid-Afrika : 'n evaluering van die huidige posisie, met spesifieke verwysing na sekere aanbevelings ten opsigte van trusts

Nel, Ada Mara (1999-11)

Study project (M.Rek.) -- University of Stellenbosch, 1999.

Thesis

ENGLISH SUMMARY: The distribution of wealth and income is very unequal in South Africa. The poorer 80 percent of the population was prevented from accumulating wealth, largely as a result of political factors. The possibility of tax reformation with regards to capital transfer tax, is an important issue in South Africa, especially in times during which the government is under pressure to address the inequality in the distribution of wealth. Wealth can only be taxed directly by means of capital taxes. Capital taxes can be sub-divided into tax on capital gains and wealth tax. Wealth tax can further be distinguished into an annual wealth. tax, capital transfer tax and land-tax. The only capital transfer taxes in South Africa are estate duty and donations tax. The Margo and Katz Commissions however made certain recommendations with regards to the structure of the capital transfer tax in South Africa. One of these recommendations was the subjection of generation skipping methods (for example trusts in which no beneficiary has a vested right), to capital transfer tax. The apparent unimportant role of capital transfer tax in South Africa, as well as the possible use thereof to accomplish redistribution necessitates the evaluation of the current capital transfer system in the light of certain general principles, namely neutrality, reasonableness, incentive, economical efficiency, certainty; simplicity, cost, effectiveness, flexibility and stability. It was found that the capital transfer tax system in South Africa does not comply with the requirements of neutrality, reasonableness, simplicity and effectiveness. The following changes will improve this problem: Estate duty and donations should be administered through a single act, the rebate of R1 000 000 (with regards to estate duty) should be reviewed, and thereafter adjusted each year to take into account the effect of inflation, anti-avoidance provisions should be included in the estate duty act and capital transfer tax should be calculated on the difference between interest at an efficient rate and the actual interest rate on low interest and interest free loans. The provisions in the Constitution, the opinion of a tax expert, as well as the report of the Parliamentary Commission on the results of a discussion about the Katz Commission report, support these all these changes, with the· exception of the tax on low interest and interest free loans. Therefore the above-mentioned changes, excluding the tax on interest free loans is recommended to address the problems. Although the reform of the capital transfer tax system in South Africa seems necessary, there are certain other factors which should be taken into account: The proportion of direct to indirect taxes in South Africa, which is currently higher than in other developing countries, the administrative capacity of the South African Revenue Services, and the incentive to saving and investment. The final decision about the reform of the capital transfer tax system in South Africa is however, a policy consideration, and therefore lies with Government.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: In Suid-Afrika is die verdeling van rykdom en inkomste baie ongelyk. Die armer 80 persent van die bevolking is hoofsaaklik weens politieke faktore verhoed om rykdom te akkumuleer. In Suid-Afrika is die moontlikheid van belasting-hervorming met betrekking tot kapitaaloordragbelasting dus 'n belangrike saak, veral aangesien die regering tans onder groot druk verkeer om die ongelykheid in die verdeling van rykdom aan te spreek. Rykdom kan slegs direk bel as word deur middel van kapitaalbelastings. Kapitaal word op verskeie maniere in ontwikkelende en ontwikkelde lande belas. Dit kan in veral twee oorhoofse groepe verdeel word, naamlik kapitaalwinsbelasting en welvaartbelasting. Daar is egter ook verskeie vorme van welvaartbelasting, naamlik 'n jaarlikse welvaartbelasting, kapitaaloordragbelasting en grondbelasting. Tans is die enigste kapitaaloordragbelasting wat in Suid-Afrika gehef word, boedel- en skenkingsbelasting. Die Margo- en Katz-kommissies het egter sekere voorstelle in die verband met die struktuur van kapitaaloordragbelasting in Suid-Afrika gemaak. Een van hierdie voorstelle is byvoorbeeld die onderwerping van tegnieke waarmee generasies oorgeslaan word (byvoorbeeld trusts waarin geen begunstigde 'n gevestigde reg het nie) aan kapitaaloordragbelasting. Die skynbaar onbelangrike rol wat kapitaaloordragbelasting tans in SuidAfrika vervul, tesame met die moontlike gebruik daarvan om herverdeling te bewerkstellig, noodsaak die evaluering van die huidige kapitaaloordragbelasting-stelsel aan die hand van sekere algemene beginsels, naamlik neutraliteit, billikheid, aansporing, ekonomiese doeltreffendheid, sekerheid, eenvoud, koste,doeltreffendheid, buigsaamheid en stabiliteit. Daar word bevind dat' die kapitaaloordragbelastingstelsel in Suid-Afrika nie aan die beginsels van neutraliteit, billikheid, eenvoud en effektiwiteit voldoen nie. Die volgende veranderinge sal moontlik hierdie probleem verbeter: Boedelen skenkingsbelasting moet onder een wet geadministreer word,die korting van R1 000 000 (ten opsigte van boedelbelasting) moet hersien word en dan jaarliks aangepas word vir die effek van infiasie, teenvermydingsbepalings behoort ingestel word in die boedelbelastingwet en kapitaaloordragbelasting behoort bereken te word op die verskil tussen rente teen 'n amptelike koers en die werklike rente op rentevrye en lae rentekoers lenings. Die bepalings van die Grondwet, die mening van 'n belastingkundige, asook die verslag van die Parlementere Kommissie ten opsigte van die resultate van 'n bespreking oor die aanbevelings deur die Katz-kommissie, ondersteun al bogenoemde veranderinge, behalwe die aanbeveling ten opsigte van belasting op lae rentekoers en rentevrye leni.ngs; dus word die bogenoemde veranderinge, met die uisluiting van die belasting op rentevrye en lae rentekoerslenings aanbeveel, ten einde die probleem aan tespreek. Alhoewel die hervorming van die kapitaaloordragbelastingstelsel in SuidAfrika nodig blyk te wees, is daar sekere ander faktore wat ook in aanmerking geneem moet word: Die verhouding direkte tot indirekte belasting in SuidAfrika, wat tans reeds hoar is as in ander ontwikkelende lande, die administratiewe kapasiteit van die Suid-Afrikaanse Inkomstediens en die aansporing tot besparing en belegging. Die finale besluit oor die verandering, al dan nie, in die kapitaaloordragbelasting-stelsel in Suid-Afrika, is egter 'n beleidsoorweging ten opsigte waarvan die uiteindelike besluit by die regering van die dag berus.

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