The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
A key obstacle to fundamental tariff reform in many developing countries is the revenue loss that it ultimately implies. This paper establishes a simple and practicable strategy for realizing the efficiency gains from tariff reform without reducing public revenues, showing that for a small open economy, a cut in tariffs combined with a point-for-point increase in domestic consumption taxes increases both welfare and public revenues. Increasingly stringent conditions are required, however, to ensure unambiguously beneficial outcomes from this reform strategy when allowance is made for such important features as nontradeable goods, intermediate inputs, and imperfect competition.