The sugar tax, which was introduced by the budget speech 2016 will be effective as soon as the relevant legislation is approved by Parliament and signed into law by the President. At this stage, it is evident that the amount of tax payable will be based on the sugar content of the beverages at the proposed rate of 2.1c/gram of sugar content in excess of 4g/100ml. To ensure that both intrinsic and added sugar are included in this calculation, the legislation will follow definitions used by the World Health Organisation. This tax will also apply to concentrated beverages in line with the current health-promotion interventions proposed by Government.
Part of the revenue generated through this tax will be applied to Governmental health initiatives as a part of the strategy to fight non-communicable diseases.
A revised Carbon Tax Bill is to be tabled in Parliament and receive public comments by mid-2017. A revised regulation for the carbon offset allowance will be published alongside the Carbon Tax Bill and will enable corporate entities and firms to reduce their carbon tax liability. It was also noted that during the first phase of the tax, which will run until 2020, there will be no impact on the price of electricity as a result of the imposition of this tax.
Further clarity is needed on the alignment of the carbon tax and the carbon budget after 2020 which Government assures us will arrive by the end of the year.