Corporate-Shareholder Taxation in South Africa: 1914-1953

Published as J. Hattingh, Corporate-shareholder taxation in South Africa: 1914-1953, In J. Hattingh, J. Roeleveld and C. West, eds., Income Tax in South Africa – The First 100 years, (2016) Juta & Co: Cape Town, 80-110

31 Pages Posted: 28 Jul 2017 Last revised: 26 Oct 2017

See all articles by Johann Hattingh

Johann Hattingh

University of Cape Town (UCT) - Faculty of Law

Date Written: January 1, 2016

Abstract

The book chapter charts a complex of ideas about how corporate and shareholder income was and ought to have been taxed over the course of the first half century of income taxation in South Africa (1914-1953). In this period, at least six phases with distinct patterns can be discerned. A close correlation exists between each of these phases and changes of the ruling political party or formation of coalition governments. In three of these instances, world events such as the First and Second World Wars and the Great Depression impacted the reforms of the system for company and shareholder taxation. As will be revealed, South Africa was not entirely isolated and ideas were borrowed from familiar quarters, mostly from the Commonwealth and particularly the United Kingdom and Australia. What added a layer of complexity though was the special role that the mines played in the South African tax system. Overall still, the detailed review of legislation and pronouncement thereon by South African courts documented in this chapter suggests that concerns about double taxation of corporate and shareholder income were genuinely addressed in various shades of intensity between 1914 and the 1961.

Keywords: Income Tax History, South Africa, Corporate-Shareholder Tax

JEL Classification: K20, K30, K34, B10, B20, B15, B25

Suggested Citation

Hattingh, Johann, Corporate-Shareholder Taxation in South Africa: 1914-1953 (January 1, 2016). Published as J. Hattingh, Corporate-shareholder taxation in South Africa: 1914-1953, In J. Hattingh, J. Roeleveld and C. West, eds., Income Tax in South Africa – The First 100 years, (2016) Juta & Co: Cape Town, 80-110, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3007065

Johann Hattingh (Contact Author)

University of Cape Town (UCT) - Faculty of Law ( email )

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South Africa

HOME PAGE: http://www.tax.uct.ac.za/aprof-johann-hattingh

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