Unpacking the Vape Tax in South Africa: Understanding the R2.90/mL Levy

February 5, 2024

The vaping landscape in South Africa has seen significant changes in recent times, and one notable development is the introduction of a vape tax. This tax aims to regulate the vaping industry and address concerns related to public health. In this blog post, we will delve into the specifics of the vape tax, focusing on what is taxed and how much is levied.

The Basics of the Vape Tax:
The South African government has implemented a tax on vaping products, targeting both bottled e-liquids and disposable devices. This tax is calculated based on the volume of e-liquid in each product, with a set rate of R2.90 per milliliter.

Bottled E-Liquids:
For bottled e-liquids, the tax is straightforward. It applies to every milliliter of e-liquid contained in the bottle. Therefore, if you purchase a 30ml bottle of e-liquid, you can expect an additional R87.00 in tax (30ml x R2.90/ml).

Disposable Devices:
The R2.90 per milliliter tax also extends to disposable vaping devices. These devices, known for their convenience and ease of use, are subject to the same taxation rate. The tax is calculated based on the total volume of e-liquid contained within the disposable device.

Implications for Vapers:
Vapers in South Africa need to be aware of the additional costs associated with the vape tax. When purchasing e-liquids, whether in bottles or disposable devices, the R2.90/ml levy will contribute to the overall price. Understanding these costs can help vapers make informed decisions and budget accordingly.

Government Intentions and Public Health:
The implementation of the vape tax reflects the government's efforts to regulate the vaping industry and address potential health concerns associated with vaping, even though public health England and various other associations have evidenced that vaping is 95% safer than smoking traditional cigarettes. By imposing a tax on these products, authorities aim to strike a balance between consumer freedom and public health.

As South Africa adapts to the evolving landscape of vaping regulations, the vape tax stands out as a significant development. Vapers must be mindful of the R2.90 per milliliter levy, whether they opt for bottled e-liquids or disposable devices. This knowledge empowers consumers to make informed choices while contributing to a broader understanding of the vaping industry's impact on public health.


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