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This publication presents an overview of tax policy and tax administration issues—how countries in Asia and the Pacific compare with the rest of the world in main taxes, revenue collections, tax morale, and others. The implications of reducing reliance on customs tariff revenues and of using the value-added tax on a broader basis, especially in the services sector, have been analyzed. This note suggests an agenda for reform by discussing whether there is space to increase national revenue collections, how to improve tax administration and enforcement, and how these reforms interact with the decentralization paradigm. The individual country performances, the extent of the shadow economy, and lessons on reforming tax administration have been referenced.


This article was first published by the Asian Development Bank (

Jorge Martinez-Vazquez, and Yongzheng Liu. Philippines: Designing a Local Government Enhancement Fund. Southeast Asia Working Papers, 2011.

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