Front Matter

Front Matter

Parthasarathi Shome
Published Date:
April 1995
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    TAX POLICY Handbook

    Edited by

    Parthasarathi Shome

    Tax Policy Division

    Fiscal Affairs Department

    International Monetary Fund

    Washington, D.C.


    © 1995 International Monetary Fund

    Reprinted August 1999

    Reprinted February 2002

    This book was designed and produced by IMF Graphics Section

    Cataloging-in-Publication Data

    Tax policy handbook / edited by Parthasarathi Shome. —

    Washington, D.C.: Tax Policy Division, Fiscal Affairs Department, International Monetary Fund, 1995

    p. cm.

    ISBN 1-55775-490X

    1. Taxation — Handbooks, manuals, etc.

    2. Fiscal policy — Handbooks, manuals, etc. I. Shome, Parthasarathi, 1950- II. International Monetary Fund. HJ2305.T29 1995

    Price: $25.00

    Please send orders to:

    International Monetary Fund, Publication Services

    700 19th Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20431, U.S.A.

    Tel: (202) 623–7430 Telefax: (202) 623–7201




    This Handbook was written primarily for economists who are responsible for analyzing and evaluating economic policies of developing countries at an applied level, and who would benefit from a comprehensive discussion of the concepts, principles, and prevailing principal issues of taxation. It attempts to provide a systematic exposition of important tax policy issues selected for their theoretical foundations and their practical relevance, and brings the reader closer to some of the recent advances in the theoretical literature on tax policy. Its basic goal is to present clarifications, elaborations, and integrations of concepts rather than to make a textbook presentation of a voluminous and diversified body of literature on taxation. In particular, it attempts to address certain technical issues on which adequate treatment may not be easily available from conventional sources, even though such issues have often arisen in the context of IMF missions.

    There are important differences between this Handbook and a good textbook. In particular, the Handbook emphasizes hands-on applications of principles of taxation for the applied economist in situations involving actual policy advice; groups topics as they are likely to arise rather than solely on the basis of their conceptual interrelationships; and presents the material in a manner that should help the applied economist easily turn to it for reference and guidance.

    It is hoped that the readers of this Handbook will be better informed to discuss tax policy issues with country authorities. Nevertheless, the views expressed are the responsibility of the authors and not necessarily those of the IMF.

    Vito Tanzi


    Fiscal Affairs Department


    The Handbook was prepared by staff members of the Tax Policy Division of the Fiscal Affairs Department. The chapters have benefited substantially from the comments and suggestions of many colleagues. They include Ved Gandhi, Emil Sunley, and Alan Tait, as well as various members of the Tax Administration Division and Fiscal Analysis Division, including Sheetal Chand, Jon Craig, and Koenraad van der Heeden. The editor would like to express his gratitude for their helpful and constructive suggestions.

    The editor is also grateful to Vito Tanzi, Alan Tait, and Teresa Ter-Minassian for their encouragement through various phases of the project.

    Martha Bonilla, of the External Relations Department, provided editorial advice. Agnes Basilio, Karen Fahlgren, and Carolyn Knapp typed successive drafts of the Handbook, with the support of Lyndsey Livingstone. Yvonne Liem and Anne Salda helped prepare the references.

    Parthasarathi Shome

    Division Chief

    Tax Policy Division


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