The centre for tax analysis in developing countries

Overseas Development Institue Institue for Fiscal Studies

Introduction to our country partnerships

TaxDev has been working with tax policy teams in finance ministries and revenue authorities in Ghana and Ethiopia since February 2016. As part of the expansion and extension of the programme in 2018, and in collaboration with ODI, we entered into two new partnerships with the Governments of Rwanda and Uganda in mid-2019. 

In all four countries we work with partners to prepare for budgets and regular fiscal events, respond to new policy priorities, and to support longer-term reform objectives. This involves providing input into forecasting, budgeting, policy appraisal and costing processes, and assessing the impacts of proposed and actual policy reforms. In addition to assessing the revenue effects of polices, we work with partners to undertake analysis of the growth and distributional effects, and crucially to assess how specific policies impact upon low-income households.  Most recently, we have also been working closely with partners as they develop strategies to respond to the coronavirus pandemic.

As well as informing decisions in particular policy areas, our co-production methodology aims to foster increased analytical capacity within government and support the development of sustainable models, tools and methods which can be used by partners over the long-term. We also collaborate with analysts and policymakers to assess the current opportunities and obstacles to making greater use of evidence in the policymaking process at different levels of government. 

Across TaxDev, we share skills, experience, methods and resources to create linkages across countries and workstreams.

Broadly, our work is organised around three main areas:

1. Increasing data resources and building data infrastructures

A lack of access to taxpayer-level administrative data remains a key constraint for tax policy teams in many low- and middle-income countries, and much of the analysis undertaken currently relies heavily on aggregate revenue data, which may not provide sufficient detail to answer complex policy questions. Our goal is to work with partners to identify, source and compile relevant data and invest in relationships and mechanisms to support data sharing and extraction.

2. Building technical and analytical skills and conducting applied research

Using better data, we collaborate with analysts to enhance technical capacity through formal training, the co-design of applied research projects and the co-production of analysis. We work with partners to build statistical software and data analysis skills, critically assess and incorporate empirical evidence, build models and tools, and interpret and communicate findings. The aim is to support our partners to better shape the policy agenda and work with policymakers and politicians to make policy choices based on careful considerations of trade-offs and interactions.

3. Increasing the uptake of evidence in the policymaking process

We are also working to strengthen the bridge between the research conducted by analysts and the policy decision-making process. This involves reviewing the tax policymaking process and how it fits in to the wider budgeting process, looking at approaches to engage with external stakeholders including businesses and civil society organisations, and identifying some of the organisational constraints to conducting and using analysis, including investigating options to free up more human resources for analysis.

More detailed information about the specific work in each country can be found on our country pages.

News, Blogs and Events


5th World Bank/IFS/ODI Tax Conference: The political economy of public finances

This conference brings together leading researchers and policymakers to discuss recent research on the political economy of public finances...


Ghana's Ministry of Finance and TaxDev host VAT and distributional analysis event

On 20th June 2023, the Ministry of Finance in Ghana, in collaboration with TaxDev, invited stakeholders from government, the private sector, and ci...


Ethiopia publishes its second tax expenditure report for FY 2018/19 to FY 2020/21

The Ethiopian Ministry of Finance (MoF) has published its second tax expenditure report covering customs duty and import taxes for the fiscal year ...


Ugandan Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development publishes tax expenditure report for 2021/22

In September 2022 the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development (MoFPED) published its tax expenditure report for 2021/22....


The devil in the detail? Eight lessons from tax expenditure reporting in Rwanda and Uganda

In recent years, an increasing number o...


Why and how should developing countries raise more taxes?

Governments in many developing countries urgently need to raise funds to invest in education, health and infrastructure....

Resources and Tools

Resources & Tools

Tax expenditure reporting in Rwanda and Uganda: Challenges, practical guidance and lessons learnt

Tax expenditures (TEs) are used widely around the world....

Publications and Projects


Effective tax rates and firm size: the case of Uganda

Do some firms pay more corporate taxes than others?...


Effective tax rates and firm size: the case of Ethiopia

Do some firms pay more corporate taxes than others?...


Customs revenue in Ghana: recent trends and their causes

The collection of tax revenue at customs has long been an important revenue source in Ghana....


Exploring business-level taxes in Uganda

Exploring the relationship between the VAT and the Business Income Tax in Uganda...


A survey of the Ghanaian tax system

In its 2020 Ghana CARES ‘Obaatanpa’ programme, the Government of Ghana emphasised the need to improve domestic revenue mobilisation in order to ens...


A survey of the Ethiopian tax system

Over the last 15 years, the Ethiopian economy has registered growth of around 10.2% per year in real terms, making it one of the fastes...

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