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Returns from personal income tax have dwindled due to the slowing economy, the South African Revenue Service (SARS) and the Treasury say. Tax revenue has doubled in the past 10 years, and SARS head of revenue and research Randall Carolissen said personal income tax had been the biggest contributor since the 2008-09 financial crisis. But that contribution was beginning to dwindle, he said. "It’s the impact of a very slow economy. Our personal income tax was extremely buoyant but that has taken a back seat because business confidence is very low. Companies don’t employ more people. As the economy lifts, tax buoyancy will lift," Carolissen said. In the medium-term budget policy statement, Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba estimated the tax revenue deficit to be R50.8bn in 2017-18. It is the biggest deficit since the 2009 recession. The budget deficit is also projected to widen from 3.1% to 4.3% of GDP. Personal income tax, which boosted revenue in the past, grew below past levels of 12%, ...

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