Excise Duty Increases – Wine industry appreciates greater understanding

Thursday, 21 February, 2019
Vinpro
The South African wine and brandy industry welcomes the inflationary increase in excise duties announced by Government on 20 February 2019.

During the annual National Budget Speech, Finance Minister Tito Mboweni announced a 7.4% increase in wine and brandy excise and 9% on sparkling wine.

While there is tremendous pressure on the Minister to increase excise tax, the wine and brandy industry is satisfied with the recently announced inflationary increase on these products. This increase is in line with the policy framework submitted and discussed in 2014.

“The wine and brandy industry relies on Government support and cooperation to improve its value proposition in the international arena. We welcome the inflationary excise increase and the certainty that this policy framework offers, as it will contribute to necessary and beneficial growth for the industry,” says Rico Basson, MD of the wine industry body Vinpro.

It is clear from positive growth in the export value of wine during 2018 that the international market is eager to pay more for South African wines. It is vital for the industry and the country to maintain this momentum under challenging economic conditions, especially while the recent drought will still have an impact on this year's crop.

The wine and brandy industry's sustainability extends to job creation and social upliftment and should therefore be a priority for Government. The South African wine and brandy industry supports more than 290 000 jobs and its contribution to the country's GDP amounts to R36.1 billion.

“A healthy wine and brandy industry will encourage foreign investment and trust, which is in line with Government's renewed focus on international interests and economic growth,” Basson said. “Continuous and transparent dialogue between the industry and various Government departments on the unique challenges facing wine producers and cellars will remain a priority.”