The Promise and Limitations of Information Technology for Tax Mobilisation

Tax revenue in many low-income countries is inadequate for funding investments in public goods and human capital. While tax systems have been adopting new technologies to improve tax collection for many years, limitations to in-person interactions due to COVID-19 have further highlighted the role of information technology in tax mobilisation. This paper examines the potential of technology to transform tax administration by helping to identify the tax base, facilitate compliance, and monitor compliance. It also identifies possible limitations to the use of technology arising from inadequate infrastructure and connectivity, lack of adoption (or resistance) by taxpayers and tax collectors, lack of institutional mainstreaming, and an unsupportive regulatory environment.