ROB ROSE: How British American Tobacco torpedoed Sars’s efforts to reclaim tax owed
A new book, ‘Tobacco Wars’, exposes the shady game that British American Tobacco played in undermining the SA Revenue Service
Former SA Revenue Service (Sars) investigations head Johann van Loggerenberg can’t be too popular at British American Tobacco’s (BAT) glass-fronted offices at Cape Town’s V&A Waterfront right now. Last month, he released his third book since leaving Sars in 2015, Tobacco Wars, which dismantles the rather quaint notion that BAT is a benign force for good, driven by the noble goal of seeking to ensure everyone just pays their fair share of tax.
BAT is SA’s largest cigarette manufacturer, reportedly accounting for more than 80% of the market. It is also a driving force behind the Tobacco Institute of SA (Tisa), the umbrella body representing Big Tobacco.