African Tax Administration Paper 3

Administrative data from tax returns have recently become available in many African countries thanks to the modernisation of revenue authorities and the digitisation of tax records. The availability of these data has opened new opportunities for policy-relevant analysis of real-life taxpaying behaviour. However, despite the increased availability of these data, a gap remains in many countries in relation to administrative records on employment incomes. Without these records, it is very difficult to obtain a realistic picture of income distribution and its evolution, and to understand how policies and macroeconomic conditions, such as high inflation, affect the welfare of workers. In this study, we explore the current state of administrative wage data in Ethiopia and the main challenges that limit their availability and reliability, and identify three key patterns.


Andualem T. Mengistu

Andualem Mengistu is a Technical Advisor at the IMF Fiscal Affairs Department and Director at the Macroeconomic Division at the Ethiopian Development Research Institute.

Giulia Mascagni

Giulia Mascagni is a Research Fellow at the Institute of Development Studies and Research Director of the ICTD. Her main area of work is taxation, but she also has research interest in public finance, evaluation of public policy, and aid effectiveness. She is an economist by training, holding a PhD in Economics from the University of Sussex. Her main geographical interest lies in African countries, with a particular focus on Ethiopia and Rwanda.
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