Tax Advocacy Toolkit

While some pioneering civil society groups have long been campaigning for fairer tax systems, the critical role of tax in achieving development and social justice has often been neglected by civil society in the North and the South. For many, tax is a complex topic, best left to ‘experts’. But this need not be the case.

Tax may appear technical, but it is an issue too critical to bypass. Fair and effective tax collection is essential for raising the revenue to deliver services that citizens need. It is a powerful tool for redistributing wealth within society to address poverty and inequality. And tax is the glue that builds accountability of governments to their citizens.

Restructuring the Excise Tax on Cigarettes and Tobacco Products to Address Leakages and Enhance Revenue

This paper argues that one way of solving the deficit is by adjusting the excise tax on cigarettes and tobacco products, two of the so-called “sin products.” There are inconsistencies in the current tax structure and tax data5 prove that these are sources of leakages. As a result, the “sin tax” has not been meeting its revenue potential.

Tax Reforms and Collective Action

The fiscal problem is perhaps P-Noy’s toughest challenge. He promised not to impose new taxes, and this limits his room for maneuver to solve the fiscal constraint, which is essentially a problem of low revenue collection. This is the context in which P-Noy welcomes PPPs (public-private partnerships). Yet, PPPs will not result in higher tax effort.