21 January 2022
2022/23 BUDGET SPEECH
In view of the Budget Speech by the Minister of Finance on 23 February 2022, the following is a summary of distress calls from the constituency of the National Employers’ Association of South Africa (NEASA).
We wish to emphasise, at the outset, that the business community has no appetite for jargon-laden promises, for instance, expressions such as “pro-growth fiscal consolidation and implementing long-touted reforms to eliminate structural constraints to growth”. We request the Minister to be straight forward, practical and to the point.
NEASA herewith submits that the Minister should deal with the following during the budget speech:
- What measures have been taken to realise the promises of removal of the regulatory burdens on business – because we can, as a voice of SMMEs in South Africa, testify that we have not experienced any relief in this regard?
- Instead of merely increasing taxes, what measures are envisaged to bolster the capacity of the South African Revenue Service (SARS)?
- Following the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Mineral Resources and Energy’s mid-April 2021 request for public input and expert representations on how to mitigate rising fuel costs in South Africa, the following considerations and recommendations were made:
- an investigation to be conducted on the current pricing model for all fuel;
- a recalculation and audit of existing elements within the pricing model;
- a reduction of the cost of the Road Accident Fund (RAF) to motorists;
- better allocation and utilisation of funds from the General Fuel Levy (GFL);and
- investment in alternatives to the country’s current reliance on fuel.
NEASA expects the Minister to respond to these suggestions.
- The Minister stated in his 2021 Medium-Term Budget Policy Statement (MTBPS), that government’s “…first and immediate task, … must be to ensure stable energy supply, reduce the risk of load-shedding and accelerate the transition to renewable energy sources”. The Minister also admitted that all government’s “efforts over the past 13 years have been to fix Eskom, instead of addressing security of supply by adding additional capacity to the grid”. The Minister is requested to indicate what measures have been undertaken to realise the above objectives. NEASA also requests the Minister to indicate to what extent government considers the implementation of financial benefits for all businesses, based on their degree of self-generation and self-sufficiency.
In conclusion, NEASA requests the Minister to indicate, from a policy and budgetary point of view, what measures government envisages to expand the tax base, increase the ability of business to create jobs and inspire the populace to become productive citizens and less dependent on the State.
060 885 5612