Smokers, drinkers cough up more yet again

You will pay R2.89 more for a 750ml bottle of spirits and 74c extra on a packet of cigarettes

Alcohol drinkers may have to consider sorghum beer as their drink of choice this year, after Finance Minister Tito Mboweni increased sins tax by up to 7.5%.  

You may have to consider sorghum beer as your drink of choice this year. Picture: 123RF/LIGHTFIELDSTUDIOS
You may have to consider sorghum beer as your drink of choice this year. Picture: 123RF/LIGHTFIELDSTUDIOS

Alcohol drinkers may have to consider sorghum beer as their drink of choice this year, after Finance Minister Tito Mboweni announced sins tax increases of between 4% and 7.5%.  

“Price of beer goes up, price of wine, price of spirits and tobacco all goes up,” Mboweni said.

You now will pay R2.89 extra for a 750ml bottle of spirits. Consumers will also fork out 74c more for a packet of cigarettes, 40c extra for piped tobacco and see a 14c increase for a 750ml bottle of wine. Sorghum beer will not see an increase.

Vapers are the hardest hit, with a 23 gram cigar now set to cost you R6.73 extra.

“In line with Department of Health policy, we will start taxing heated tobacco products, for example hubbly bubbly. The rate will be set at 75% of the rate of cigarettes. Heated tobacco or so-called vapes, will be taxed from 2021,” Mboweni said.

With government also trying to plug its budget deficit amounting to over R370bn this year, it will increase the plastic bag levy on shopping bags bought at retailers from 12c to 25c at the beginning of April.

And the Budget Review also notes that in future the government will use its tax policies to encourage you to be greener – expect that the tax on your company car will be used to incentivise more fuel-efficient vehicles and there may be a tax on electrical and electronic waste.

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