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Tax laws trip up many small businesses

Sep 03 2013 12:02
Sapa

Johanneseburg - Bureaucratic processes continue to be a problem for start-up businesses in the Western Cape, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) said on Tuesday.

There was a lack of support from government and the cost of compliance was a huge burden on business owners, it said in a statement.

“If business fails to comply with the laws, the penalties are harsh. The new Tax Administration Act is less flexible as little discretion is permitted,” said William Eastwood, a partner at PwC's tax department in Cape Town.

The implementation of much of the tax legislation was found to be difficult.

It said entrepreneurs and small or family-owned businesses play a vital role in fuelling the country's growth and economic development, and stumbling blocks include the registration of businesses.

PwC said research showed that the average South African business takes about 200 hours per year to attend to tax compliance matters. This includes the completion and submission of 32 or 33 tax returns.

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