Tax Increases hurt SA drinkers.
Unsurprisingly, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan, has once again increased the duty on alcohol in the budget speech.
Excise duties on alcoholic beverages (beer, sparkling wine and spirits) will increase by between 6.2% and 12%, however, there has been no increase in the excise duty on traditional African beer or beer powder.
Smokers have also been penalised with an increase of 68 cents per packet of 20 cigarettes whilst cigar smokers will pay R5.11 more per 23g. The tax on cigarette tobacco goes up by 87 cents per 50g and pipe tobacco by 9 cents per 25g.
What will it cost me?
Here are the increases on your favourite drinks:
Malt beer is increased by 9 cents per 340ml can or bottle
Still, unfortified wine is increased by 13 cents per 750ml bottle.
Fortified wine is increased by 27 cents per 750ml bottle.
Sparkling wine is increased by 62 cents per 750ml bottle.
Ciders and alcoholic fruit beverages are increased by 9 cents per 330ml bottle.
Spirits are increased by R4.76 per 750ml bottle.
In the UK, a movement is afoot to stop another excessive increase in duty following a series of ‘sin taxes’ over the years which have left consumers paying 50% more in duty per bottle of wine since 2008.
Campaigners for the increase claim that it reduces health care costs and saves lives whilst campaigners against the increase believe it will increase the government’s coffers and create up to 6,000 jobs.
Here in SA, we are already reeling from irrational liquor trading hours and conditions as well as the threat of a ban on all alcohol advertising.
What do you think will be the results of these increases? Will it benefit the populace at large by reducing alcohol consumption or is it just another way of lining the pockets of those in charge? Tell us below.