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Small Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMMEs) play a significant role in the socio-economic stimulation of South Africa. Particularly, South African SMMEs are believed to contribute around 50% to the national Gross Domestic Product (GDP) while simultaneously employing up to 80% of the national workforce. Prior research does however suggest that these business entities have among the worst sustainability rates in the world as up to 75% fail after being in operation for three years. A probable reason for the latter dispensation is the non-management of economic factors, one of which is that of Taxation. Taxation is a mandatory obligation imposed on citizens of a country to fund state expenditure. For this working paper, Customs and Excise Taxation is focused on; Taxation that is levied on goods and/or services that are hazardous to both human- and environmental health and wellness. Over the years, Customs and Excise Taxation has not only been imposed on tobacco products, alcoholic products and plastic bags but have also increased year-on-year, to date. As such, the perception was formulated by the author that the sustainability of South African (retail) SMMEs, especially those who sell tobacco products, alcoholic products and plastic bags, are adversely affected by the year-on-year increases of Customs and Excise Taxation. The primary objective of this working paper is to ascertain whether the perception formulated shows truth, in theory. This working paper therefore takes on a non-empirical, exploratory approach that makes use of a qualitative research methodology. Stemming from the findings, thus far, it appears that Customs and Excise Taxation adversely influences the sustainability of South African SMMEs that sell tobacco products, alcoholic products and plastic bags.