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Factors of tax compliance that influence small business growth in KZN.

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Small and medium enterprises play an important role for South Africa. They serve as a vehicle in creating jobs for local communities. KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) is the second largest province in the country and the necessity of developing sustainable small and medium businesses cannot be overemphasized. The South African government has identified and made the development of small businesses as one of their strategic objectives. Despite the importance of these businesses for the country and province, there are many challenges that these businesses face. One of the most onerous and time consuming challenges is tax compliance. Tax compliance was defined as the preparation, submission and payment of taxes due within the specified time periods and in order to achieve the objectives set out by government, it is necessary that the tax systems for small businesses be efficient and simplified in order to meet the needs of the sector. The research has been undertaken to determine if tax compliance is a factor which has negatively influenced businesses in KwaZulu-Natal. The literature review suggested that tax compliance is a significant factor for small businesses and the current system of taxation is ineffective. The research design was quantitative in nature. A questionnaire was completed by eighty-five small business owners and these findings were statistically analyzed. The empirical research indicated that small business owners perceive tax as a threat for business growth and sustainability. In addition, these business owners also feel that the current initiatives introduced by the South African Revenue Services (SARS) is not helping to address the problems with compliance and they require more from the government and the SARS. The findings from this study will assist the SARS in understanding the specific challenges that small and medium business face and help to improving the current tax policies for small businesses.


Masters Degree. University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban.