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.
Considering the need to broaden the tax base and to increase tax revenue in an efficient, equitable, and cost-effective manner, this paper analyzes presumptive taxation methods and their application in sub-Saharan Africa. Presumptive taxation involves simple techniques to capture income that frequently escapes conventional taxation. Presumptive taxation methods could be used more intensively in sub-Saharan Africa, and presumptive taxes on imports, withholding schemes, and graduated business license fees are most effective in raising additional tax revenue in a way commensurate with efficiency, equity, and administrative expediency. Also, intensified presumptive taxation will need stronger institutional capacity in tax administration.