Understanding fiscal capacity in developing economies: Firms as third-party tax enforcers
01 March, 2012
IGC Research on India
The difference in tax revenues (as a percentage of GDP) between developed and developing countries has always been consistently large. An IMF report estimates it to be 10-15 percentage points. The discrepancy poses two questions: Why can’t developing countries increase their fiscal capacity, and; What makes advanced economies’ governments so successful in raising revenues? The second question is the main focus of this project. It presents a simple model to explain why third-party income reporting by employers dramatically improves income tax enforcement and helps advanced countries in raising revenues.