In this episode of Between the Lines, Jalia Kangave interviews Mick Moore, and Wilson Prichard who along with Odd-Helge Fjeldstad authored the book Taxing Africa: Coercion, Reform and Development.

Taxing Africa is an accessible and comprehensive introduction to the crucial debates around taxation and development in Africa.

The book offers a fascinating insight into the key issues facing policy makers, tax collectors, civil society activists and donors working to increase revenues to finance sustainable development in Africa.

From the colonial roots of taxation on the continent, to current struggles to reduce aid dependence and shape a more just international tax system, Taxing Africa provides a “concise and masterly” (Foreign Affairs) overview, focusing on critical questions of taxation and governance, accountability, and fairness.

While demonstrating the real progress made, the book examines the critical challenges that remain, including tax avoidance by multinational companies, corruption, and the regressive nature of systems where elites often evade taxes while ordinary citizens are burdened by complex webs of ‘informal’ taxation.

As a deeply political process, the authors explore the potential for popular engagement to overcome the resistance of vested interests and create locally-owned agendas and strategies for reform.

The book is open access, and you can read and download the chapters for free here.

About the authors

Mick Moore is a Professorial Fellow at the Institute of Development Studies and a Senior Fellow of the International Centre for Tax and Development.

Wilson Prichard is an Associate Professor at the Munk School of Global Affairs and in the Department of Political Science at the University of Toronto, a Research Fellow at the Institute of Development Studies, and the CEO of the International Centre for Tax and Development.

About the interviewer

Jalia Kangave has over ten years of experience in the fields of taxation and law and development working in academia, the private and government sector, civil society organisations and international organisations.

She has undertaken research for projects financed by the International Centre for Tax and Development (ICTD), the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development and the World Bank. She also previously served as the Principal of the East African School of Taxation in Uganda, worked with PricewaterhouseCoopers Uganda as a tax consultant and lectured at the Kampala International University. She holds a PhD in Law from the University of British Columbia.

With thanks to:

  • The ‘Between the Lines‘ podcast is recorded, edited and narrated by Gary Edwards, Institute of Development Studies
  • Music credit: Crypt of Insomnia/One Day in Africa (instrumental version)/Getty Images