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SARS Multilingual Terminology list to demystify tax


The South African Revenue Service (SARS) has recently launched a volume of tax terminology translated into 10 official languages in a move the revenue service hopes will improve the understanding of tax issues and compliance in the country.

The SARS Multilingual Terminology list translates terminology in all of South Africa’s spoken languages, excluding English. The volume contains at least 450 financial terms covering topics such as tax, wills and general financial business.

Communicating with taxpayers and traders in their own language helps to provide greater clarity and certainty of SARS strategic objective in a manner that is understandable and makes it easier for taxpayers and traders to comply with their obligations.

The RMI welcomes the approach from SARS to simplify the broader public’s understanding and grasp of SARS Compliance. We believe this is a step in the right direction and will reach a broader audience, consequently supporting broader economic participation.  

The RMI has a diversified membership base, including a number of new industry participants who are part of RMI’s development membership category called National African Association of Automobile Service Providers, a development programme aimed at uplifting businesses into the formal sector.  

RMI’s head of regulatory compliance, Vishal Premlall says, “RMI members are inundated with regulatory compliance concerns. Often the process to become compliant is onerous, time consuming, confusing, complicated, and often difficult to understand. This venture by SARS will help eradicate difficulties in understanding and promote greater take up of SARS Compliance.”

The RMI understand the compliance difficulties faced by some businesses to grasp what is required of them. We further understand that language barriers do pose challenges. Sometimes these difficulties result in businesses being perceived and/or penalised as non-compliant because the business owner does not understand what is required of them.

We believe this step will assist in demystifying tax and make it easier for millions of honest tax payers and business owners to meet their obligations.

Vishal 2020
Regulatory compliance director- Vishal Premlall