This glossary describes some of the terms used on the SARS website. While every effort has been made to present accurate and up-to-date definitions, this glossary should be used as an interpretive aid only and not as an authority. SARS will not be liable for any damages of whatsoever nature arising out of the use of, reference to or reliance on any of the definitions contained herein.
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S code
Suspense coded

South Africa

The bilateral trade agreement between South Africa and Zimbabwe.

Southern African Customs Union which consist of The Republic of South Africa, The Republic of Botswana, the Kingdom of Lesotho, the Republic of Namibia and the Kingdom of Swaziland.

The free trade agreement between the Southern African Customs Union and the European Free Trade Association.

Single Administrative Document

Southern African Development Community

Safe Frameworks of standards
The expression commonly used to refer to the WCO SAFE Framework of Standards to secure and facilitate global trade, adopted by the Customs Co-operation Council in 2005.

South African Institute of Chartered Accountants

Articles which are representative of a particular category of goods already produced or are examples of goods the production of which is contemplated; the term does not include identical articles brought in by the same individual, or sent to a single consignee, in such quantity that, taken as a whole, they no longer constitute samples under ordinary commercial usage.

Samples of no commercial value
Articles which are regarded by the Customs to be of negligible value and which are to be used only for soliciting orders for goods of the kind they represent (*). Note: Such articles are normally allowed relief from import duties and taxes. In Annex B.2. to the Kyoto Convention of 1974, it is recommended that the following should be regarded as samples of no commercial value : (a) raw materials and products of such dimensions that they are useless except for purposes of demonstration; (b) articles of non-precious materials affixed to cards or put up as samples in the manner usual in the trade, provided that there is not more than one of each size or kind; (c) raw materials and products, and articles of such materials or products, rendered useless, except for purposes of demonstration, by slashing, perforation, indelible marking or by any other effective method; (d) products which cannot be put up as samples of no commercial value in accordance with paragraphs (a) to (c) above and which consist of : (1) non-consumable goods of an individual value not exceeding US$5, and provided there is not more than one sample of each kind or quality; (2) consumable goods of an individual value not exceeding US$5, even if they consist wholly or partly of samples of the same kind or quality, provided the quantity and the manner in which they are put up preclude their being used otherwise than as samples. (*) International Convention to facilitate the importation of commercial samples and advertising material (Geneva, 1952).

System Application Product

SAP approver
SAP user with approving rights on SAP system

SAP business information warehouse

SAP enterprise buyer professional (product catalogue) and special requests.

Financial contract accounts - refers to the financial accounting (sub-ledger) application in SAP.

General ledger, refers to the general ledger application in SAP.

SAP material management – used for procurement of items by generating purchase orders.

Systems Application Product – Public Sector Collections and Disbursement.

Systems, applications and products (release 3).

This refers to the financial accounting application (sub-ledger) in SAP r/3.

This refers to the general ledger application in SAP r/3.

SAP supplier relationship management.

SAP workflow – used for approvals based on organisational structure.

South African Post Office

South African Police Service

SARS Audit Risk Analysis Programme

South African Reserve Bank

South African Revenue Service

SARS Audit
Divisions within SARS which conduct audits including LBC, HNWI, Estate Audit, Restricted Taxpayer Unit (RTU) and PSU.

SARS Audit (Big E)
Divisions within SARS which conducts audits including Enforcement Investigations, LBC, HNWI, Estate Audit, RTU and PSU.

SARS Core Tax System

SARS i-model
The SARS i-model is SARS’s approach to achieving its core outcomes. The primary approach to achieve these outcomes is to shift resources, particularly human capacity, away from routine low value-adding activity into service, education and enforcement areas with high value-adding activity.

SARS liability
Liability according to the core system for a specific period, excluding any payments.

SARS official
As defined in section 1 of the Tax Administration Act, it refers to (i) the Commissioner; (ii) an employee of SARS; (iii) or a person contracted by SARS for purposes of the administration of a tax Act and who carries out the provisions of a tax Act under the control, direction or supervision of the Commissioner.

SARS Scanning Strategy
The SARS Scanning Strategy is the strategy that defines the types of documents that will be scanned at the specific Processing centre’s scanning facility at a given point in time.

Self Assessment System Questionnaire

Salaried taxpayers with investment income as well as members of Close Corporations/Directors of Companies return category.

Small Business

Small Business Tax Amnesty

Small Business Amnesty processing unit which is situated in the assessment centre.

Small Business Centre

Small Business Consultant

SAP Reconciliation Report

Small Business Programme

Service Charter

Scan batches
Scan Batches are batches of pre-sorted documents that are assembled for scanning. These batches consist of approximately 100 pages.

Scanning preparation area
The Scanning preparation area is a dedicated area at the scanning facility within which the following activities will take place: Scanning of documents as “Received for Scanning”; Performing of Quality Check of all prepared scanned batches; Where scan quality or items are not in line with the scanning strategy, forwarding these Error items for manual exception handling; Ensuring that the official SARS form (e.g. IT return) precedes any other documents related to that specific form that may be within the scanning Strategy. Inserting splitter pages.

Single Customer Master
Supply chain management

Standing Committee on Finance

Skills Development Levy

A piece of metal or other material used to join together two ends of a fastening in a secure manner (*).(*) Council Recommendation concerning Customs sealing systems in connection with the international transport of goods, 1968.

Seaport Transit Sheds
The seaport transit sheds usually contain break bulk cargo. No surety bonds are required if the sheds are within the harbour area and if Customs are satisfied with the security and control measures.

Seasonally adjusted and annualised
The process of removing the seasonal volatility (monthly or quarterly) from a time series. This provides a measure of the underlying trend in the data. Annualised: to express a rate as if it were applied over one year.

Second period
Refers to the second period for Provisional Tax purposes (second payment).

Secondary Tax on Companies (STC)
A tax levied on the net amount of dividends declared by a company.

Secondary Tax on Companies credits
The amount of dividends calculated under section 64J(2) of the Income Tax Act that were subject to STC, that must be utilised by a company to reduce its liability for dividends tax.

Section 18(3) deceased estates case
This section of the Administration of Estates Act provides for a quicker and more efficient process of administration. It can only be applied to an estate where the value of the assets are not more than R125 000 (this is the current amount determined by the Minister of Finance by notice in the Government Gazette). Instead of issuing a letter of executorship, the Master will issue letter of authority (J170). Usually an heir or family member accepts an appointment by the Master as the estate’s representative. The Master gives the representative directions on how to liquidate and distribute the assets in the estate on form J155. These instructions are very basic. The representative must collect and if necessary liquidate the assets and pay the creditors first and then the heirs’. There is no liquidation and distribution account and it does not lie open for inspection.

Share in a company; Member's interest in a close corporation (CC); or any right or entitlement to receive any distribution from a company or CC.

Securities Transfer Tax (STT)
A tax levied on every transfer of a security and is levied at a rate of 0.25%. This tax was known as Uncertificated Securities Tax prior to 1 July 2008

That which ensures to the satisfaction of the Customs that an obligation to the Customs will be fulfilled. Security is described as "general" when it ensures that the obligations arising from several operations will be fulfilled. Note: Security usually takes the form of a deposit or of a legal obligation (a bond). A surety to the bond is usually required.

Small Enterprise Development Agency

Selectively Allowed
Administrative penalties recur for each month that the taxpayer is non-compliant, up to a maximum of 35 months. Each recurring penalty will have a unique transaction number. The term ‘selectively allowed’ applies when the user dealing with the objection/appeal case only allows certain transactions to be remitted

Sending state (Foreign Diplomats)
The Government of a Foreign Country

Senior Auditor
A person who performs reviews in the High Net Worth Individuals division

Senior manager
A person who performs first level review in the High Net Worth Individuals division

Senior SARS official
In accordance with section 6(3) of the TAA, a senior SARS official refers to (i) The Commissioner; or (ii) A SARS official who has specific written authority from the Commissioner to exercise the power; or (iii) A SARS official occupying a post designated by the Commissioner for this purpose.

Service catalogue
List of all services delivered to the business by the technology division.

Service entry sheet
A list of services performed by a vendor on the basis of a purchase order, containing service descriptions and details of quantities and values. This is merely a transaction on SAP and not a record or template.

Service Manager
Service Manager is the single SARS operational system to be used by all users at back and front offices when completing client transactions with clients. It was an integral part of SARS Modernisation Programme.

Anything done or to be done. This includes the granting, assignment, cession or surrender of any right, but excludes a supply of goods, money or any stamp, form or card.

Sector Education and Training Authority

Means to resolve a dispute by compromising any disputed liability, otherwise than by way of either the Commissioner or the person concerned accepting the other party’s interpretation of the facts or the law applicable to those facts, or of both the facts and the law, and “settlement” shall be construed accordingly.
Settlor of a trust

Seventh Schedule
The Seventh Schedule to the Income Tax Act No 58 of 1962.

Any ship, vessel or boat (including a flying boat - hovercraft) of any kind whatsoever.

Ship stores
Fuel pumped on board a vessel for its own consumption.

Ship's general declaration
Declaration (IMO FAL Form 1) conforming to the provisions of the Annex to the Convention on Facilitation of Maritime Traffic, London, 1965. The general declaration is the basic document on arrival and departure providing information concerning the ship itself and summary information relating to the cargo, crew, passengers and voyage.

Standard Industrial Classification Codes.

Single view integration layer
System integration where payments are processed.

Single window (SW)
A facility that allows parties involved in trade and transport to lodge standardized information and documents with a single entry point to fulfil all import, export, and transit-related regulatory requirements. If information is electronic, then individual data elements should only be submitted once. (*) (*) UN/CEFACT). Recommendation No. 33.

SARS Insolvency Practitioners Panel

Refers to Standard Income Tax on Employees and is payable on the first R60,000 remuneration (or an annual equivalent thereof) for any period on remuneration received from standard employment. SITE is being phased out entirely, and will not applicable from 1 March 2013. Refer to section 6(5) of the IT Act, read with paragraph 11B of the Fourth Schedule to that Act.

Means "We are building", and also refers to the process SARS underwent between 2001 and 2005 with regard to restructuring its operations nationally.

Skills Development Levy
SDL is a levy payable by employers and is calculated at a prescribed percentage of the leviable amount. The levy is used for national skills development.

Service Level Agreement

Service Manager

Subject Matter Expert - an individual who is fully conversant and highly experienced in a particular field or on a specific subject.

Small, Micro and Medium Enterprises

State Miscellaneous Revenue Account

Short Message Service

Strategy, Modernisation and Technology Division.

A Customs offence where goods are moved across a Customs frontier in any clandestine manner, thereby evading Customs control (*). Notes: 1. This term may also cover certain violations of Customs legislation relating to the possession and movement of goods within the Customs territory. 2. In certain countries :- The concept of clandestine movement of goods across frontiers is not a mandatory feature of smuggling. - An offence is not defined as smuggling unless it is intentional. (*) Nairobi Convention.

Senior Human Resources Manager

Suspension of Payment
Statement of Account

Solicited relevant material
Documents requested by SARS

Standard Operating Procedure

Sorting errors
Sorting Errors are those documents that have slipped through the sorting conducted at Rough Sorting, including the following: Not a part of the Scanning Strategy; and Returns with no barcode; poor quality; incorrect form type, incorrect form year and faxes.

Source codes
A source code is a four digit identifier / number that SARS uses to capture information on the income tax return. It will usually appear alongside the amount it relates to.

Southern African Customs Union (SACU) Agreement
An agreement that allows for the unrestricted flow of goods and services, and a sharing of customs and excise revenue, between South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, Lesotho and Swaziland.

Southern African Development Community (SADC)
A regional governmental organisation that promotes collaboration, economic integration and technical cooperation throughout Southern Africa. Member states of the SADC include Angola, Botswana, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Sovereign debt
Debt issued by a government.
Special request
This is a free text shopping cart for goods and/or services not available on the product catalogue.
Specific duties and taxes
Duties and taxes which are calculated on a basis other than value. Note: The basis for calculation may be, for example : gross or net weight, the number of items, the volume, the length, the alcoholic strength by volume.

Ethyl alcohol obtained from the distillation of various base products to an alcoholic strength of usually more than 60% per volume.

Spot rate
The exchange rate at the date of the transaction.

Salaried taxpayers without allowances return category.

Sub-Saharan Africa

SARS Service Monitoring Office
Stale cheque
A cheque is normally valid for six months from the date of the cheque, after which, the cheque is considered a ‘stale cheque’.

Male adult horse

Standard employment
Any employment where an employee (including scholars and students), is required to render services to a single employer for a period of at least 22 hours in every full week provided that no regard shall be had to — periods of temporary absence of the employee due to leave or exceptional circumstances; or any temporary reduction in working hours imposed by the employer, for instance due to a reduction in the demand of the company’s product, the employer imposes a temporary working week of less than 22 hours.

Standard letter templates
e.g. Final Demand

State Warehouse
Any premises provided by the State for the deposit of goods for the security thereof and of the duties due thereon or pending compliance with the provisions of any law in respect of such goods.

Statement of account
A record for each employer reflecting all entries made with regards to PAYE, UIF and skills development levies. The records also contain sub-records for type of tax for each month.

Status codes
S – suspense

Secondary Tax on Companies is a tax that is imposed on the after-taxed profits of a company that are distributed to its shareholders.

STC Credits
The amount of dividends calculated under section 64J(2) of the Income Tax Act that were subject to STC, that must be utilised by a company to reduce its liability for dividends tax.

Stock dividend
A dividend in specie in the form of additional shares issued by a company for no consideration. Also known as a "scrip dividend" or capitalisation shares.

Stop order
Function on ITS indicating the transaction(s) for which the ITA88 process is introduced against a taxpayer.

Goods intended for consumption by the passengers and the crew on board vessels, aircraft or trains, whether or not sold.

Stores declaration
Documents providing the particulars concerning stores carried on board the means of transport, to be presented as required by the Customs. Note: The Annex to the Convention on Facilitation of International Maritime Traffic, London, 1965, provides for a Ship's stores declaration (Model Form IMO FAL Form 3). Usually only the following stores need to be listed in detail in the Ship's stores declaration: narcotics for medical use, tobacco products, beer, spirits, wines. Some countries require some or all of the information to be incorporated in the Ship's cargo declaration. The Annex to the IMO Convention contains provisions limiting the conditions under which the presentation of Stores declaration can be required, whilst Annex 9 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation, Chicago, 1944, provides for the abolition of such requirement in respect of stores remaining on board an aircraft. Annex A.4. to the Kyoto Convention of 1974 takes into account the provisions of the above instruments.

Stores to be taken away
Goods for sale to the passengers and the crew of vessels and aircraft with a view to being landed, which are either on board upon arrival or are taken on board during the stay in the Customs territory of vessels and aircraft used, or intended to be used, in international traffic for the transport of persons for remuneration or for the industrial or commercial transport of goods, whether or not for remuneration (*). (*) Specific Annex J, Chapter 4 of the revised Kyoto Convention.

Street walk
Physical surveillance of a business area to identify persons or entities who should be registered for tax.

Securities Transfer Tax

Submitting entity
It can either be the beneficial owner, the declaring company or regulated intermediary.

Substantial Transformation Criterion
The criterion according to which origin is determined by regarding as the country of origin the country in which the last substantial manufacturing or processing, deemed sufficient to give the commodity its essential character, has been carried out (*). (*) Annex D.1. to the Kyoto Convention of 1974 and Specific Annex K, Chapter 1 of the revised Kyoto Convention.

Summary level supporting data
Data, used for completion of the VAT201,i.e credit note, debit note, contract information, that is obtained from the accounting software and submitted to SARS.

Supporting data
Physical or scanned images of documents supporting the completion of the VAT201.

A natural or legal person (generally a bank or insurance company) who accepts responsibility in due legal form for the financial consequences of non-fulfilment of another's obligations to the Customs.

Surveillance zone or under the control of customs
Part of the Customs territory in which the possession and movement of goods may be subject to special Customs control measures and which is monitored by Customs for control purposes. The Customs surveillance zone generally includes frontier (border) zones, Customs maritime zones, Customs approved routes, Customs offices and any premises or sites authorised by Customs, on a permanent or temporary basis for the conduct of Customs operations. This definition must be read with Section 10. Goods are deemed imported from such time described in the mentioned section and until legitimate Customs clearance has taken place, shall be deemed to be under Customs control. Examples of the types of areas considered to be “under Customs control” would be as follows: a) Customs maritime zones; b) Air flight control areas of South Africa; c) Wharves within harbour areas where goods are landed or loaded on board vessels; d) Storage areas within the premises of airports capable of accommodating foreign aircraft and / or local aircraft flying out of South Africa’s borders; e) Licensed bonded warehouses; f) Licensed container depots; g) Licensed container terminals; h) Sheds within controlled harbour areas; i) Approved transit sheds; j) Approved railway depots; k) Registered rebate stores; l) Licensed manufacturing warehouses; m) All land border posts.

Control account between SARS bank account and National Treasury bank account.

Sweeping account
Control account between SARS bank account and National Treasury bank account.

SWIFT message
The Society for Worldwide Inter-bank Financial Telecommunication is an electronic communication method used by banks all over the world to correspond with each other in a secure and standardised way.
Last Updated: 20/07/2016 1:42 PM     print this page
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