In his medium-term budget policy statement in October, finance minister Tito Mboweni laid out plans to revive the mining industry, where output fell 1.7% in the first eight months of 2018, in contrast to a rise of 4.5% over the matching period in 2017. His plans included a focus on reforms and policy certainty. While no major tax changes were announced, trade and industry minister Rob Davies said in November that the government was investigating the introduction of tax incentives in key industries to kick-start the economy. He mentioned mining as one sector the government planned to target. Would a mining tax incentive help improve the sector’s contribution to the economy, and assist in dragging it out of recession? A 2018 report titled "Tax incentives in mining: minimising risks to revenue", published by the International Institute for Sustainable Development and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), suggests there is no clear and definitive answer. Aut...

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