News

Recession: Surprise!!

South Africa plunged into its second recession in eight years during the first quarter of 2017. Africa’s most industrialised economy contracted by 0.7% in the first three months of the year after a 0.3% drop at the end of 2016.

The New Mining Charter – The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

On 15 June 2017, the Minister of Mineral Resources published the reviewed Mining Charter.  In theory, the Charter seeks to address the issue of black economic empowerment within the mining sector. In practice, though, the Charter has already induced panic in the financial markets and is likely to discourage investment, complicate shareholding matters and reduce employment within the mining sector.

For Internationally Mobile Investors, a Second Citizenship Provides a Passport to the World

As the world becomes ever more globalised and people live and conduct business on a progressively more international scale, freedom to move within the global market provides a decided edge. Increasingly, a valuable asset in the portfolios of wealthy investors has become a second passport.

Ethics in Valuations

Some of these are rather simple. You are engaged by the shareholders of a business and asked to value the business, as the shareholders wish to take out buy-and-sell cover.

It appears straightforward. However, at times there is an acrimonious split or a sale situation where the buyer and seller have very different values in mind. Emotions of the parties are running high and you are under pressure by one party to achieve a certain result.

Proposal to Amend Foreign Employment Income Tax Exemption

Currently, if a South African resident is employed and works abroad for more than 183 days of which 60 days are continuous within a 12 month period, the employment income earned is exempt from tax in South Africa. This is commonly called the section 10(1)(o) exemption. Following the Budget announced on 22 February, this is now under attack.

Heads up Trusts: Section 7C Has Arrived!

Many of us, especially those who have a significant number of assets and want some form of protection, have created Trusts over the years to benefit and administer our estates in such a way to minimise risk and as a consequence of common law and legislation, draw on the tax benefit it offers.
 
At the beginning of the year, the presidency signed into law the Taxation Laws Amendment Act, No. 15 of 2016, noted in the government gazette number 40562 on 19 January 2017 (the “Act”) which will change estate planning and how trusts are used.

Don’t Be Caught by These Common Scams - Part 3

From cellphone threats and malware, to organizations, innumerable numbers of threats exist across the cyber landscape. Because you can commoditize cyber crime, it is making it easier and cheaper to launch attacks on a global scale. Cyber security has become a buzzword in the business environment, due to the numerous breaches reported. In Part 3 of this series, we discuss fake technical support scams you may come across.

Fresh Optimism in Mining Sparks Opportunities for Moore Stephens

​The upswing in the mining industry, which was reflected at the 2017 Investing in African Mining Indaba in Cape Town in February, has opened up exciting opportunities for Moore Stephens. 
 
Michael Simms, Moore Stephens Mining and Energy leader, based in London, was upbeat about projects which had survived the downturn cycle. Together with the more optimistic outlook for a number of commodities, he expects the expansion of Moore Stephens firms and increased presence in African countries to lead to wider opportunities.

Cash, Cows and Tax

Many South African farmers are suffering due to the effects of the severe drought that recently hit South Africa. Although fellow South Africans are trying to help farmers reduce the drought’s side effects, the taxman is not so sympathetic should the farmer not follow the correct procedures.
 
More often than not, livestock farmers pay more tax in a year that is hit by a severe drought than in a year with an above average rainfall. The reason for this is that, in a dry year, grazing pastures are limited which leaves farmers with no other option than to sell a portion of their livestock. Should the rain not arrive early enough to provide sufficient grazing before the end of his tax year, farmers will be unable to purchase replacement livestock.

2016 in Perspective

For the majority of South African investors, these four numbers represent a year that most are quite happy to see at its end. The proverbial punches started in December 2015 with Nenegate, and in January last year, global financial markets produced their worst start in decades, preceded by a tumbling oil price.  Locally, a sovereign credit ratings downgrade plagued markets as our economy continued to slow down. 

Mining Indaba 2017

Moore Stephens International member firms are once again attending the Mining Indaba conference in South Africa, taking place between 6th - 9th February 2017. With over 6,000 delegates from organisations across the globe including mining and exploration companies, international investors, mining services providers, law firms and investment banks, the conference provides a great opportunity to network with key clients and targets.

POPI – It’s Time to Start Complying

POPI was signed into law by the President on 19 November 2013. Only certain parts of the Act have since come into operation, mostly the parts dealing with the establishment of the Information Regulator which, when the Act comes fully into operation, will be the governing body that will deal with any or all complaints in connection with personal information. The Act is expected to come into full operation within 12 months, being middle to end of 2017.
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