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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Shifts in personal income taxation in Botswana against the backdrop of a Schumpeterian 'crisis of the tax state' in sub-Saharan Africa
Author:Takirambudde, PeterISNI
Periodical:Lesotho Law Journal: A Journal of Law and Development (ISSN 0255-6472)
Notes:biblio. refs.
Geographic terms:Botswana
Southern Africa
Subjects:income tax
Economics, Commerce
Abstract:The law and structure of personal taxation in Botswana has undergone fundamental changes during the last decade. The previous tax structure that comprised 14 brackets with rates ranging from 6 percent to 75 percent has been replaced by a structure that consists of five brackets with tax rates ranging between 5 percent and 40 percent. These reforms contrast sharply with trends elsewhere in sub-Saharan Africa. African tax systems in general and personal taxation in particular have been characterized by a state of crisis, or what J.A. Schumpeter dubbed the 'crisis of the tax state' that is, the inability of the logic of a tax system to adapt itself to the prevailing imperatives and requirements of the socioeconomic system. This paper uses the Botswana experience to demonstrate the exceptionality of this sub-Saharan country that has ducked the trend towards a Schumpeterian crisis of the tax state. It provides an overview of the general context of taxation in sub-Saharan Africa, followed by an outline of the historical aspects of personal taxation in Botswana. The next sections summarize the early postindependence approaches to personal taxation in Botswana and the major reforms that have been implemented during the 1980s and 1990s. App., ref.