The HEALTH PROMOTION  LEVY ON SUGARY BEVERAGES came into effect on 1 April 2018.

 The levy is charged at 2.1 cents per gram of the sugar content which exceeds 4 grams per 100 ml. This means that the first 4 grams per 100 ml are levy free.

Manufacturers that produce sugary beverages with a total annual sugar content in excess of 500 kg per year need to be licensed with SARS and pay the levy to SARS. Those manufacturers that produce below the 500 kg per year will not have to pay the levy, but they are required to register with SARS.



The Health Promotion Levy (HPL) on sugary beverages is a levy in support of the Department of Health’s deliverables to decrease diabetes, obesity and other related diseases in South Africa. The HPL is administered and collected by SARS.

 The Health Promotion Levy on sugary beverages was legislated through the Rates and Monetary Amounts and Amendment of Revenue Laws Act, 2017 – Act No. 14 of 2017 as published in the Government Gazette on 14 December 2017.


How does HPL work?

HPL on Sugary Beverages will be calculated as follows:

  • The rate is fixed at 2.1 cent per gram of the sugar content that exceeds 4 grams per 100ml. The first 4 grams per 100ml are levy free;
  • HPL will be paid in addition to any other Customs and Excise Duty payable and imports will not be declared on separate bills of entry;
  • Sugar content means both the intrinsic and added sugar and other sweetening matter;
  • Sugar content will be calculated on:
    • The sugar content as certified on a recognised test report from a testing facility accredited with SANAS or ILAC;
    • In the absence of such a valid test report, a deemed sugar content of 20 grams per 100 ml is assumed.
  • For powder and liquid concentrates, sugar content will be calculated on the total volume of the prepared beverage.


Which goods are subject to HPL?

All goods manufactured in, or imported into South Africa will be subject to the payment of HPL, specifically:

  • Identified imported products will be taxed when it is cleared for home consumption and
  • Locally manufactured products will be taxed at source.

Please note that HPL is a domestic consumption tax and is therefore not payable on sugary beverages that are exported or processed in the manufacture of other dutiable goods.


Who is it for? 

HPL on sugary beverages is payable by manufacturers in the RSA.


What steps must I take?

Relevant entities in the RSA must license with SARS Excise before they start to manufacture or otherwise deal in sugary beverages on which the applicable HPL has not yet been paid.


For more information, see the FAQ’s on Health Promotion Levy on Sugary Beverages.