Gender Impacts of Revenue Collection in Uganda

image of Gender Impacts of Revenue Collection in Uganda

Gender responsive budgeting is a key instrument to track how governments are investing in advancing gender equality and equity. While most studies of gender responsive budgeting work so far have examined the expenditure side of the budget, the revenue side is equally important. In this Economic Paper, Nite Tanzarn looks at the revenue and tax system in Uganda, a country that has moved from analysis to action in gender responsive budgeting. This case study will show policymakers in ministries of finance worldwide how government revenue collection practices affect men and women differently, and how to build an awareness of gender into financial policy.



Revenue Generation Policy and Institutional Framework

The roots of taxation in Uganda lie in the hut tax, which was introduced in 1900 by the then British colonial administration. The hut tax was levied on any building that was used as a dwelling-place and was payable in money or labour, enforced on a per household basis. The household in this case referred to a collection of not more than four huts in a separate and single enclosure and inhabited by a man and his wife or wives. The head of household, assumed to be the man, was responsible for paying the tax. This colon ial policy greatly contributed to the delineation of the market economy from the unpaid care economy, with the latter being defined as female space. This ideology has been consolidated, heightened and reinforced by post-colonial fiscal policies, including revenue-generation regimes.


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