Artists do not have a tax status related to their positions as artists. The majority of artists who would fall into the category of “independent contractors” would have a similar status to other self-employed or other workers whose income fluctuates. In these cases, artists would have the status of “provisional tax payers”. Provisional taxpayers are required to self-assess their income and pay tax on this income within six months of this income having been earned. The South African Revenue Service assesses tax returns after the close of the tax year, and if insufficient tax has been paid by the provisional taxpayer, s/he is required to pay the outstanding amount as well as interest levied on this amount.
Royalties and tax system
According to the Performing Arts Workers Equity Report, royalties on copyright are taxed at a rate of 30%.
Exemptions or special provisions on cultural products
There are special provisions for temporary imports in that 50% duty is payable when the goods enter the country, and this is refunded when the goods leave the country. However, this applies generally as opposed to cultural products in particular.
There are no exemptions or special provisions regarding import duties on equipment and materials required for cultural production. Specific items might be exempted or have rebates, but this would need to be tested against a list of such items that enjoy such rebates.
Special tax regime for cultural products
There is no special tax regime for cultural products.
The importing of industrial equipment for the construction, mining, beverage and other industries is exempt from duty or enjoys significant rebates, but this is not the case with the creative industries at the moment.
Law or regulations governing these matters: The Customs Act No 91 of 1964 governs import duties.
Source: UNESCO, December 2005.