Industry experts speculate on budget

Thomas McLachlan

Thomas McLachlan

Industry experts and official opposition party, the Democratic Alliance (DA), are in agreement that corporate tax cuts should be high on the agenda for the upcom-ing budget announcement tomorrow as should job creation, fighting crime and pension fund tax cuts.

The DA, which presented its own alternative budget yesterday ahead of finance minister Trevor Manuel's annual announcement, said private investment in the country should be encouraged by bringing the total corporate tax rate down four percent to 25 percent. The secondary tax on companies (STC) should also be halved, with a view of eradicating it altogether, it added.

Chief economist at Efficient Group Dawie Roodt added that this would increase foreign investment as foreigners were confused as to how tax operated in South Africa.

Trade union Solidarity said it wanted job creation and economic growth to be the main focus of the upcoming budget.

"We would like to see a helping hand being extended to the country's job pro-viders, and small businesses are the main employers in the economy. We also hope that the minister will announce increased rates of income tax reduction for small businesses, particularly since such a step will give new businesses a better chance of success," Solid-arity economist Lullu Krugel noted.

A proposed system, which forces people to save towards retirement, death, disability and unemployment benefits, is expected to incorporate any reductions in pension fund taxes, according to Roodt meaning that tax on these benefits would probably remain the same for the coming year.

The DA has also called for a basic income grant to be "made available to all South Africans earning less than R7500 per annum who are not receiving another state grant". - With Sapa and I-Net Bridge

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