The writer is an MBA student at the Graduate School of Business Administration, Bar-Ilan University
The Israel-South Africa Chamber of Commerce hosted a seminar on September 26, entitled "Tax structures for Israeli companies doing business in South Africa following the new Israeli tax reform." The seminar, held in Tel Aviv, was sponsored by Bank Leumi.
Keynote speaker at the seminar was Leon Harris of Ernst & Young in Tel Aviv. Harris, an international tax partner with the multinational accounting firm, dealt with the new Israeli tax reforms Income Tax Ordinance amendment 147 that are due to be introduced on January 1, 2006. He also delivered a South African tax advisory provided with the assistance of Zeridium (Pty) Ltd of Johannesburg.
The presentation covered various topics including an overview of the South Afrcian tax laws, tax structures, financing operations, South African retained profits, profits repatriated to Israel, capital gains tax and real estate taxes.
Business Opportunities in South Africa
Relations between South Africa and Israel have improved remarkably over the past few years. In October 2004, then Trade and Industry Minister Ehud Olmert met with his South African counterpart Mr. Mandisi Mphahlwa in South Africa signed an agreement for the reciprocal promotion and protection of investments. The South African Trade Minister will be visiting Israel in November of this year.
The improved ties and good relations between the two nations have opened the doors for renewed trade and investment opportunities between businesses in Israel and South Africa.
Because of these developments, the Israel South Africa Chamber of Commerce put together the tax seminar and speaker Harris went to great lengths to try and explain both the Israeli and South African tax laws with the specific goal of companies in Israel avoiding a "double tax" situation.
Israel-South Africa Chamber of Commerce (ISACC)
The ISACC was founded as a non-profit association in 1973 with the mission of promoting and developing bi-lateral trade and investment between Israel and South Africa in close cooperation with its sister chamber in Johannesburg, the South Africa-Israel Chamber of Commerce.
The ISACC also attempts to expand the global and local networking forum of members and potential members by linking other bi-national chambers of commerce, government trade offices, export institutes, businesses and other commercial offices. Its executive committee includes representatives from the Israel Ministry of Industry and Trade, the Israel Export and International Cooperation Institute, the Federation of Israeli Chambers of Commerce and the Federation of Bi-National Chambers of Commerce. The ISACC also enjoys the full cooperation of the South African Embassy in Israel and hosts many events for its member every year as does the South African- Israeli Chamber of Commerce. News of these events can be found on the ISAAC website
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