A hike in VAT may be one of the few options finance minister Tito Mboweni has to lift revenue when he presents the budget at the end of this month. Whether it's a VAT hike or a payroll tax, analysts have little doubt he will be digging deeper into consumers' pockets.

As unpopular as a hike in VAT will be, especially given the impact on low-income consumers and that the government has consistently broken its pledges to trim spending, such an increase could inject at least R15bn of additional revenue into the state's coffers, tax experts said this week.

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