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South Africa: New VAT registration requirements, non-resident suppliers of e-services

South Africa: New VAT registration requirements

An increased number of non-resident suppliers of electronic services (e-services) will be required to register for value added tax (VAT) purposes in South Africa beginning 1 April 2019 due to an amendment to the definition of “electronic services.”


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Previously the definition was limited to specific electronic services but has now been expanded to include, subject to very limited exceptions, all services supplied by means of any electronic agent, electronic communication, or the internet for a consideration. The expanded definition is intended to treat supplies by foreign suppliers and supplies by domestic suppliers similarly for VAT purposes.

Suppliers will therefore, subject to certain exceptions, must register for VAT purposes in South Africa when:

  • Supplies by non-residents
  • Supplies of e-services by an electronic agent, electronic communication, or the internet subject to certain exclusions and exceptions
  • Supplies from an export country when at least two of the following elements are present:
    • Supplies to a South African resident entity
    • Payment from a South African bank
    • Recipient has business or postal address in South Africa
  • Total value of supplies is greater than ZAR1 million (approximately U.S. $70,000)

Read a March 2019 report [PDF 103 KB] prepared by the KPMG member firm in South Africa

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