South African Draft Tax Bill Published

14 November 2008

South Africa’s Treasury on Thursday published the draft Interactive Gambling Tax Bill 2008 for public comment. The bill accompanies the National Gambling Amendment Bill, which passed in May 2008 and brings legalized Internet gambling to the country for the first time.

According to the draft bill, as prescribed by the Gambling Act, during each assessment period a rate of 6 percent of gross gambling revenue will be imposed on operators with an interactive gambling site licensed in South Africa.

The money will be paid into the National Revenue Fund, where "all money received by the national government must be paid, except money reasonably excluded by an Act of Parliament."

In July, after the National Gambling Amendment Bill was finally signed by Thabo Mbeki, the country’s former president, IGamingNews was told that full implementation of the law would face delays -- but not unreasonably long ones.

Wayne Lurie, a South African attorney specializing in commercial, Internet and Internet gaming-related law, told IGN that the delays would likely be linked to the now-published taxation bill, which was introduced in June 2008.

"I suspect that this is because the associated gaming tax law is yet to be settled," Mr. Lurie told IGN in July. "I do not imagine though that there will be inordinate delay in that process."

However, according to a prepared statement by the Treasury accompanying the tax bill, the bill will not be tabled in Parliament until the first half of 2009, following a public comment deadline of March 1.

Due to time-zone disparities, IGN’s contacts in South Africa were not available for comment today. More on this story to come next week.

Click here to view a copy of the press release that accompanied the draft bill.

Click here to read the draft bill in full.




Emily Swoboda is the senior staff writer at IGamingNews. She lives in St. Louis, Mo.