Turn sinning into saving

In his 2018 Budget speech, Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba announced the annual increase in excise duties, otherwise known as sin taxes.

Wine will cost you 30c more per litre, with duties increasing from R3.61 to R3.91/litre. Spirits will cost R190.08/litre, up from R175.19. This means you will spend about R61.30 in excise duties per 750ml bottle.

Smokers will be paying R15.52 in tax per packet of 20 cigarettes, an 8.5% increase from the current rate of R14.30.

Have you considered what you could do with the money you would save if you’d quit smoking and drinking, and how this choice could empower you financially?

Kwaku Koranteng, an economist at Absa, says giving up drinking and smoking could have a profound effect on your pocket.

“Say you spend R500 a month on wine and cigarettes, and you quit and saved that money. You would realise R30 000 in savings over five years without investment growth,” says Koranteng. “If you took those savings and put them in a fixed-deposit account with investment growth of 9% a year, you would realise R37 712.07 at the end of the five years.

“At a time when the country is feeling economically pressured, these are significant savings that cannot be ignored. Of course, there are the added health benefits of quitting drinking and smoking, and the fact that you will be able to enjoy the savings you have made in new and interesting ways.”

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