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Shifting Tax Burdens through Exemptions and Evasion: an Empirical Investigation of Uganda

Bernard Gauthier () and Ritva Reinikka ()

Journal of African Economies, 2006, vol. 15, issue 3, 373-398

Abstract: This paper investigates the impacts of tax reforms implemented in Uganda in the mid-1990s on the prevalence of tax evasion and exemptions among firms, and their effects on the distribution and dispersion of tax burdens. Based on firm-level data collected from 243 firms, we observe that evasion and exemptions were widespread and that their prevalence actually increased during tax reforms. We use three-stage least squares to simultaneously estimate tax burdens, evasion and exemption patterns in 1995 and 1997. We find that tax exemptions benefit large businesses to a disproportionate degree, while evasion is more common among small businesses. This creates a situation in which medium-sized firms shoulder a disproportionate tax burden. Copyright 2006, Oxford University Press.

Date: 2006
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Journal of African Economies is currently edited by Marcel Fafchamps

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