Media Releases

Media Releases for 2022

For the Media release archive from 2007 to 2021, click here. 

SARS permanent Voluntary Disclosure Programme

Published Date: 30/11/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS), in terms of the Tax Administration Act No. 28 of 2011, has made provision for the Voluntary Disclosure Programme (VDP) to be permanently available to a qualifying individual, company or trust that seeks to voluntarily disclose and regularise their tax affairs.


Trade Statistics for October 2022

Published Date: 30/11/2022

SARS today releases trade statistics for October 2022 recording a preliminary trade balance deficit of R4.31 billion attributable to exports of R159.61 billion and imports of R163.92 billion.


SARS settles labour dispute and reinstates former employees

Published Date: 22/11/2022

SARS is pleased to announce that it has settled the labour dispute with and reinstated two former employees, Ms Hope Mashilo and Ms Tshebeletso Seremane with effect 1 September 2022. This marks a further milestone in reversing and repairing the adverse effects of the capture of SARS and its journey to rebuilding public confidence and trust. 


Media Statement: Greater focus on taking tax transparency and exchange of information to the next level

Published Date: 18/11/2022

This past week witnessed the tax world focusing on taking tax transparency and exchange of information to the next level during the annual OECD Global Forum on Tax Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes (Global Forum) 15th Plenary held in Seville, Spain from 9-11 November 2022.


Media statement on the direct 7 year sentence for corrupt SARS officer

Published Date: 17/11/2022

The South African Revenue Service has welcomed a 7 years direct prison sentence handed to one of our own, Mr Malatse Kolokoto by the Palm Ridge Magistrate Court after being found guilty of corruption. This stems from an incident in which the accused facilitated that a traveller leaves the country with goods without proper declaration. 


SARS welcomes the judgment of the High Court (Gauteng Provincial Division) on 11 November 2022

Published Date: 11/11/2022

SARS has welcomed the judgment of the High Court to set aside the Report of the Public Protector on the “Investigation into Allegations of Maladministration, Corruption and Procurement Irregularities and Improper Conduct by the South African Revenue Service (SARS) in Connection with the Handling of a Tender for the Provision of Bespoke Software Development, Maintenance and Support Services for the Benefit of SARS for a period of 7 (seven) years”.


Statement and public apology to current SARS employees who were adversely affected by actions taken by SARS and certain third parties during 2014 – 2018

Published Date: 11/11/2022

Statement and public apology to current SARS employees who were adversely affected by actions taken by SARS and certain third parties during 2014 – 2018.


SARS’ public apology to employees adversely affected by its action

Published Date: 10/11/2022

Media statement and public apology to former SARS employees who were adversely affected by actions taken by SARS, and certain third parties, during 2014 – 2018.


SARS furthers International Tax Cooperation in Africa and among BRICS countries

Published Date: 04/11/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) participated in two multilateral meetings in the current week to cement international tax co-operation in Africa and among the BRICS Countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa).


SARS and the dtic start distributing clothing and footwear to KZN flood victims living in shelters

Published Date: 02/11/2022

The initiative whereby the South African Revenue Service (SARS) and the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (the dtic) have joined forces with Business and Labour to donate tons of seized clothing, blankets, and footwear to flood victims in Kwa-Zulu Natal, has entered its second phase. This entails the donation of clothing and footwear to the flood victims.


Trade Statistics for September 2022

Published Date: 31/10/2022

SARS today releases trade statistics for September 2022 recording a preliminary trade balance surplus of R19.70 billion attributable to exports of R191.56 billion and imports of R171.86 billion.


SARS and law enforcement agencies take action against illegal and illicit goods

Published Date: 27/10/2022

Millions of rands worth of illegal or illicit goods were confiscated in several joint operations conducted through coordinated efforts within SARS over the past month.


SARS committed to achieve higher revenue estimate

Published Date: 26/10/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) welcomes the consistent emphasis by the Minister of Finance, Mr Enoch Godongwana, on ensuring that government finances are spent in an equitable, efficient and flexible manner to support South Africa’s development objectives.


SARS takes a further step towards improving the integrity of trade and traveller facilitation as part of implementing Smart Borders

Published Date: 20/10/2022

Travelers are required by law to make certain declarations of goods and cash on entering or leaving South Africa. The declaration process is in line with practices around the world and in compliance with the provision of the Customs and Excise Act No. 91 of 1964 which makes it mandatory for any person entering and leaving the Republic to declare any goods in their possession. Full details of prohibited and restricted goods are available on the SARS website (www.sars.gov.za), and travelers are advised that it is their responsibility to comply.


SARS celebrates its silver jubilee

Published Date: 14/10/2022

Today, the South African Revenue Service (SARS) will host its 25th anniversary celebration, following its formal establishment on 1 October 1997. The auspicious event will be addressed by President Cyril Ramaphosa.


Trade Statistics for August 2022

Published Date: 30/09/2022

SARS today releases trade statistics for August 2022 recording a preliminary trade balance surplus of R7.18 billion attributable to exports of R175.37 billion and imports of R168.19 billion.


SARS sharpens its focus on Trusts

Published Date: 28/09/2022

SARS is working hard to increase and expand the use of data. Through this process, SARS has identified a significant number of beneficiaries of Trusts who have received distributions but have not submitted income tax returns in line with their legal obligation as per the annual public notice under section 25 of the Tax Administration Act 23 of 2011. These beneficiaries consist of companies, individuals and Trusts who must submit their outstanding income tax returns immediately. Failure to remedy this non-compliance, SARS will invoke the provisions of the law which may include actions such as raising estimated assessments, imposition of interest and penalties as well as civil and criminal sanctions.


SARS clamps down on the illicit rhino industry

Published Date: 22/09/2022

In line with its strategy objective of making hard and costly for those who engages in non-compliant activities, several specialised divisions within the South African Revenue Services (SARS) are focussing on tax audit investigations aimed at suspect non-compliant taxpayers, actors and facilitators benefitting directly or indirectly from tax evasion and illicit financial flows stemming from wildlife crime.


Trade Statistics for July 2022

Published Date: 31/08/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) today releases trade statistics for July 2022 recording a preliminary trade balance surplus of R24.76 billion.


New legislative tool targeting unexplained wealth to be piloted

Published Date: 30/08/2022

An initiative, being piloted by a number of government departments and agencies in law enforcement and prosecution, will make it more cost effective, faster and easier to investigate and recover assets acquired through suspected unlawful activities such as corruption, fraud, tax evasion and money laundering.


SARS Customs seizes Crystal Meth at OR Tambo International Airport

Published Date: 28/08/2022

The Customs officers of the South African Revenue Service (SARS) at the OR Tambo Airport, intercepted pelleted cargo that was destined for Australia. The consignment which was declared as Multi-Purpose Anti-Slip Mat was upon physical inspection, found to be have been used to conceal Crystal meth weighing 785 kg with the street value of R236 million.


Media statement on Gold Leaf Tobacco

Published Date: 26/08/2022

SARS welcomes an order by the North Gauteng High Court granting a preservation order in terms of section 163 of the Tax Administration Act No. 28 of 2011 against Gold Leaf Tobacco Corporation and its directors, Messrs Rudland and Adamjee. SARS has been investigating and clamping down on the illicit economy focusing on tobacco, gold and fuel industry over the last year, and this is one of the many enforcement steps executed by SARS.


SARS to appeal judgement

Published Date: 24/08/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) has noted the Labour Court judgement of 22 August 2022 on the matter between Mashilo and Seremane v the Commissioner of SARS. The matter relates to an incident that dates back to 2015 during the tenure of the former Commissioner.


Suspension of industrial action at SARS

Published Date: 12/08/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) welcomes the suspension of the industrial action by two recognized labour unions, PSA and NEHAWU. The PSA was the first officially to suspend the industrial action from 20 July 2022, followed by NEHAWU on 08 August 2022.


Agencies pledge to strengthen collaboration ahead of critical FATF review

Published Date: 11/08/2022

South African institutions at the heart of fighting corruption, including state capture, pledged their commitment to strengthen their joint efforts and enhance collaboration to ensure those who abused state resources are brought to book.


Clearing agent in court for defrauding SARS and importers

Published Date: 03/08/2022

he South African Revenue Service (SARS) notes the appearance of a clearing agent and his co-accused at the Durban Commercial Crime Court on 28 July 2022, for a customs and excise related fraud matter. The two were charged with defrauding SARS and their clients of more than R2 million.


Trade Statistics for June 2022

Published Date: 29/07/2022

SARS today releases trade statistics for June 2022 recording a preliminary trade balance surplus of R24.23 billion attributable to exports of R184.61 billion and imports of R160.38 billion. 


Media update on the ongoing SARS strike

Published Date: 27/07/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) remains committed to resolving the ongoing industrial action with organised labour. As communicated earlier, SARS does not determine its own budget, but relies on funding allocation from National Treasury. It is within this context that SARS commenced negotiations with its partners in labour.


SARS Media Release on the Chinese Railway Rolling Stock Corporation’s (CRRC) matter

Published Date: 21/07/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) welcomes the judgment by the North Gauteng High Court dismissing the Chinese Railway Rolling Stock Corporation’s (CRRC) application to have SARS return money taken from its bank accounts in terms of third party appointments under section 179(6) of the Tax Administration Act No. 28 of 2011 as part of SARS efforts to collect outstanding taxes.


SARS Customs puts contingency measures in place at border posts during strike

Published Date: 15/07/2022

SARS remains open for further engagement with labour

Published Date: 12/07/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) wishes to confirm that PSA and NEHAWU members have embarked on an industrial action as per the notice given by the union to SARS Management. The resumption of strike follows its temporary suspension by the PSA in May, and union leadership has indicated that they intend to remain on strike until SARS improves its wage offer


Trade Statistics for May 2022

Published Date: 30/06/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) today releases trade statistics for May 2022 recording a preliminary trade balance surplus of R28.35 billion.  The R28.35 billion preliminary trade balance surplus for May 2022 is attributable to exports of R179.46 billion and imports of R151.11 billion.


2022 Tax Filing Season 

Published Date: 29/06/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) has made significant changes to the 2022 Tax Filing Season. This year, over 3 million individual non-provisional taxpayers, have been auto-assessed by SARS and will not have to file a tax return if they are satisfied with the outcome. 


SARS media statement

Published Date: 15/06/2022

SARS has noted the recent allegation made in the press and social media that the Commissioner for SARS is a director of a company owned by President Ramaphosa. It is insinuated that SARS has therefore remained silent about the tax matters of President Ramaphosa.


SARS sews victory protecting the textile industry

Published Date: 10/06/2022

The South African Revenue Service welcomes the unanimous judgment of the Supreme Court of Appeal (“the SCA”) which has affirmed its procedure and right to seize goods which have been under-declared when crossing South Africa’s borders.


SARS and DTIC donate tonnes of seized clothing, blankets and footwear to flood victims

Published Date: 08/06/2022

SARS and the Department of Trade Industry and Competition (DTIC) have joined forces to donate tonnes of seized clothing, blankets and footwear to flood victims in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN), Eastern Cape, North West, and the Free State provinces.


SARS seizes 11 falsely declared containers

Published Date: 08/06/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) through its Customs & Excise National Rapid Response Team seized eleven (11) falsely declared consignments made up of clothing that were presented as shoes with a total prejudice to the fiscus to the value of R 3-million.


SARS Customs intercepts rhino horn at OR Tambo

Published Date: 03/06/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) Customs unit working with the South African Police Service (SAPS) successfully foiled an attempt to smuggle rhino horn out of the country after receiving information about the suspicious luggage en route to Abu-Dhabi.


Trade Statistics for April 2022

Published Date: 31/05/2022

SARS today release trade statistics for April 2022 recording a preliminary trade balance surplus of R15.49 billion attributable to exports of R151.79 billion and imports of R136.30 billion.


SARS reminds representative taxpayers of trusts of their duty to register trusts for income tax purposes

Published Date: 27/05/2022

SARS would like to advise representative taxpayers of trusts of their duty to register trusts for income tax purposes.


Misdeclaration of sugar, textile and tyres

Published Date: 26/05/2022

The Illicit Trade Unit (ITU) of the South African Revenue Service (SARS) in Durban has clamped down on an importer of 20 containers of sugar that were declared as containing rice, which is duty free.


SARS remains operational despite strike

Published Date: 25/05/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) has noted that organized labour has opted to embark on an industrial action despite concerted efforts by SARS to avert the strike. SARS believes that its offer, to which it has received no response, is the best under the prevailing socio-economic challenges facing the country. SARS is also limited by the resources available to it from the funding grant.


Negotiations between SARS and Organised Labour

Published Date: 22/05/2022

The leadership of South African Revenue Service (SARS) met with the Organised Labour represented by the National Education Health and Allied Workers Union (NEHAWU) and Public Servants Association of South Africa (PSA) to find resolution to the matters on which the unions declared a dispute.


Rhino horn found in luggage at OR Tambo International Airport

Published Date: 29/04/2022

Customs officers of the South African Revenue Service (SARS), in collaboration with other government departments, intercepted the luggage of a female South African passenger at OR Tambo International Airport which contained twelve (12) pieces of rhino horn weighing  30.7 kilograms.


SARS releases the preliminary trade statistics for March 2022

Published Date: 29/04/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) today releases trade statistics for March 2022 recording a preliminary trade balance surplus of R45.86 billion. These statistics include trade data with Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho and Namibia (BELN). The year-to-date (01 January to 31 March 2022) preliminary trade balance surplus of R62.10 billion is a deterioration from the R99.06 billion trade balance surplus for the comparable period in 2021. Exports increased by 9.8% year-on-year whilst imports increased by 21.3% over the same period.


SARS carries out search and seizure operations in various sectors

Published Date: 07/04/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) through its Syndicated Tax & Customs Crime Division, carried out inspections as well as search and seizure operations on entities in the banking sector, tobacco and cigarette sector, alcohol, gold and clothing industries in KwaZulu-Natal, Western Cape and Gauteng.


Media Release – SARS Collects R1.564 trillion

Published Date: 01/04/2022

In its 25th anniversary year, the South African Revenue Service (SARS) is pleased to announce the 2022 preliminary tax revenue collection outcome after the second year of national COVID-19 lockdown regulations.


Trade Statistics for February 2022

Published Date: 31/03/2022

The R10.60 billion preliminary trade balance surplus for February 2022 is attributable to exports of R141.15 billion and imports of R130.55 billion. Exports increased by R10.51 billion (8.0%) between January and February 2022 and imports increased by R3.98 billion (3.1%) over the same period.


Preliminary SARS revenue collection outcome for 2021/2022

Published Date: 28/03/2022

The SARS Commissioner Mr Edward Kieswetter will announce the preliminary revenue collection outcome for 2021/2022 on Friday 1 April 2022 at 14:00.


Launch of SARS multilingual tax terminology publication

Published Date: 17/03/2022

The Commissioner of the South African Revenue Service (SARS) Mr Edward Kieswetter has committed the organisation to promoting the use of historically marginalised official languages in the tax and customs environment.


Joint operation in KZN yields illicit cigarettes, narcotics

Published Date: 04/03/2022

A joint operation involving the South African Revenue Service’s Customs officers, the SA Police Service (SAPS) and the Metro police led to the confiscation of over 2 million cigarettes and narcotics in Durban yesterday.


Scrap metal exporter found guilty of lying to Customs

Published Date: 03/03/2022

A Cape Town-based export company and its director were found guilty of mis-declaring a consignment of scrap metal in order to avoid paying the recently introduced export duties on scrap metal.


Trade Statistics for January 2022

Published Date: 28/02/2022

The R3.55 billion preliminary trade balance surplus for January 2022 is attributable to exports of R130.12 billion and imports of R126.57 billion.


Assets of diagnostic radiologists attached over tax debt of R52-million

Published Date: 25/02/2022

Assets belonging to a practice of two diagnostic radiologists have been attached by the Sheriff of the High Court over outstanding returns and a tax debt of R52-million owed to the South African Revenue Service (SARS).


SARS will not tolerate employees who collude with taxpayers

Published Date: 24/02/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) has noted with concern the arrest of two SARS employees on allegations of extortion after the two employees demanded money from a taxpayer in return for reducing or cancelling the taxpayer’s debt.


SARS making illicit tobacco trade hard and costly

Published Date: 23/02/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) through its Criminal and Illicit Economic Activities and Customs Divisions carried out inspections as well as search and seizure operations on cigarette companies and manufacturers in KwaZulu-Natal, Western Cape and Gauteng.


SARS welcomes the revised Revenue Estimate

Published Date: 23/02/2022

SARS welcomes the upwardly revised revenue collection estimate announced by Minister of Finance, Mr Enoch Godongwana. In his 2022 Budget Review speech, Minister increased the revenue estimate to R1 547.07 billion from the February 2021 budget estimate of R1 365.1billion. The 2021/22 revenue yield is expected to result in the tax-to-GDP ratio reaching 24.7%, which is higher than pre-COVID level and that indicates that the extraction rate is on a positive trajectory.


The cutting of utility services at one of the SARS offices in Pretoria

Published Date: 15/02/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) has noted the decision of the City of Tshwane to disconnect the utility services at a SARS office in Ashlea Gardens, Pretoria.


SARS Customs seizes illegal catalytic converters valued at R21-million

Published Date: 02/02/2022

The Customs Division of the South African Revenue Service (SARS) made three seizures at the OR Tambo International Airport of catalytic converters and crushed powder from the core of a catalytic converter, valued at R21-million. The crushed powder extracted from the core of a catalytic converter is contributing to a new drug craze.


Trade Statistics for December 2021

Published Date: 31/01/2022

The R30.14 billion preliminary trade balance surplus for December 2021 is attributable to exports of R156.30 billion and imports of R126.16 billion.


SARS commits to increased use of data for trade efficiency

Published Date: 26/01/2022

The Commissioner of the South African Revenue Service (SARS), Mr Edward Kieswetter, has committed the SARS Customs division to scale up digital transformation and to increase the use of data to improve the facilitation of trade, revenue collection and improve compliance by traders who import and export goods across South Africa’s borders.


Former SARS employee gets 12 years custodial sentence

Published Date: 25/01/2022

A former employee of the South African Revenue Service (SARS) Bilal Shaik has received a 12-year custodial sentence for fraud, forgery, uttering and money laundering, amounting to R6-million.


Release of Tax Statistics for 2021

Published Date: 25/01/2022

National Treasury and the South African Revenue Service have published the 14th annual edition of the Tax Statistics.


The passing of Mr Trevor van Heerden, first Commissioner of SARS

Published Date: 06/01/2022

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) is saddened to note the passing yesterday evening of its first Commissioner, Mr Trevor van Heerden. He was a skilled and dedicated civil servant who committed more than forty years of his life to SARS and one of its predecessors, Inland Revenue.


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