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South Africa: Tax changes owing to introduction of IFRS 16

South Africa: Tax changes owing to introduction of IFRS

Effective from annual reporting periods beginning on or after 1 January 2019, International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) 16 introduces a single lessee accounting model, with earlier application permitted (as long as IFRS 15 is also applied).


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What is IFRS 16?

Unlike the previous lease standard (IAS 17), IFRS 16 does not include a lease-classification test for lessees. As a result, lessees account for all leases on the statement of financial position by recognising a right-of-use asset and a lease liability (other than leases that qualify for one of the recognition exemptions).

Tax implications

Because leases will be recognised on the statement of financial position, amortisation will be accounted for over the useful life of the right-of-use asset (generally the shorter of the lease term or the useful life of the asset). Finance costs will be recognised and will increase the carrying amount of the lease liability over the period of the lease. The lease payments made during the course of the financial year will result in a reduction to the carrying amount of the lease liability.

From a tax perspective, consideration of applicability of certain provisions (including sections 12C, 11(e), and 11(a) of the Income Tax Act No. 58 of 1962) is needed to determine the correct amount deductible in the tax computation, as well as the relevant adjustments that must be made.

Read a November 2019 report [PDF 111 KB] prepared by the KPMG member firm in South Africa

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