HEALTH PROMOTION LEVY
Why Treasury has delayed sugar tax implementation
The beverage industry will need to reformulate its drinks to contain less sugar
Implementation of the health promotion levy — previously known as the sugar-sweetened beverages tax — will be delayed until April 2018, Treasury deputy director-general Ismail Momoniat said on Tuesday. The proposed tax, which was initially due to come into effect in April, and then June 2017, has been subjected to extensive consultations both in Parliament and in the National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac), which is close to finalising an agreement between the government, business and labour on measures to mitigate the effect of the proposed tax on jobs and on the sugar industry as a whole. The tax was first announced by then finance minister Pravin Gordhan in his budget of February 2016 and a draft policy paper was published for public comment in July 2016. Further public comment was invited earlier in 2017 on the draft Rates and Monetary Amounts Amendment Bill, which contained the proposal to tax the sugar content of beverages at a rate of 2.1c/g above the thresh...