Fixing African Economies: Policy Research for Development

By Lucie Colvin Phillips; Diery Seck | Go to book overview

6
Madagascar: Using Policy Research in
Formulating Tax Policy
Pépé Andrianomanana and Clive Gray

This chapter is based on “Enhancing Transparency in Tax Administration, ” a 1996–1998 study of Madagascar's tax system supported by USAID's EAGER Project. Its point of departure was the consensus among observers of Madagascar's economy that rapid inflation was retarding economic growth, depressing social expenditure, and undermining poverty reduction. To a significant extent, this macroeconomic imbalance stemmed from poor performance of the country's tax system.

Between 1987 and 1995, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and Madagascar's leading donors, the World Bank and France, fielded at least eight missions that dealt with various aspects of Madagascar's tax system. Their reports and subsequent negotiations yielded substantial reforms in the tax code and its administration. These raised the ratio of tax revenue to GDP above 10 percent by 1998, following a nadir of 8.3 percent in 1994. As coordinators of the EAGER study, the authors saw no need to cover the same ground as the reports of the financing agencies. Instead, they posed the hypothesis that enhanced transparency in tax administration might improve the tax system's performance still further. This transparency was expressed in open, official recognition of the elevated level of tax evasion and the introduction of untried approaches to reducing it.

The chapter begins with a summary of the macroeconomic context of our tax policy research in Madagascar. The next section summarizes the thrust and impact of the aforementioned agency research. An outline of decisionmaking processes on tax policy in effect in Madagascar during the EAGER study is followed by a description of the study, its principal findings, efforts to disseminate them, and follow-up by government agencies.

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Fixing African Economies: Policy Research for Development
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page *
  • Contents vii
  • Acknowledgements ix
  • 1 - Fixing African Economies: the Research-Policy Nexus 1
  • Notes *
  • 2 - Ghana: Promoting Accountability and Transparency in Government Behavior 25
  • Notes *
  • 3 - Nigeria: Understanding Attitudes Toward Democracy and Markets 65
  • Notes *
  • 4 - Kenya: Policy Research and Policy Reform 95
  • Notes *
  • 5 - Tanzania: Policy Research and the Mining Boom 117
  • 6 - Madagascar: Using Policy Research in Formulating Tax Policy 129
  • Appendix - Other Recent Tax Policy Research in Madagascar *
  • Notes *
  • 7 - Ghana and Uganda: Considering Monetary and Exchange Rate Policies 155
  • Notes *
  • 8 - South Africa: Policy-Oriented Research on Labor Markets and Poverty 183
  • 9 - Conclusions 209
  • Acronyms 227
  • References 229
  • The Contributors 237
  • Index 243
  • About the Book 249
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