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Value Added Tax Policy And Implementation In Singapore

Listed author(s):
  • Glenn Jenkins


    (Queen's University, Kingston, On, Canada)

  • Rup Khadka

The Value Added Tax (VAT) was introduced in Singapore in 1994 as a major part of an overall tax reform package and with a strong political commitment to its implementation. As the Singaporean economy has many special features that make it difficult for a generic VAT to function well, such as a very high ratio of imports and exports to GDP and relatively large financial sector, a number of modifications were made in its design and administration to facilitate its operation. These modifications demonstrate how the basic structure of the VAT can be successfully adapted to fit the particular circumstances of a country, provided it is done with care to practical issues of compliance and administrative feasibility. The detailed preparation, openness, and high energy level of the tax authorities made it possible to implement the VAT in an exemplary manner. The case of the implementation of the GST in Singapore comes close to being a “best practices” framework to guide other governments toward a successful introduction of this important system of taxation.

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Paper provided by JDI Executive Programs in its series Development Discussion Papers with number 1998-02.

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Length: 13 pages
Date of creation: Mar 1998
Handle: RePEc:qed:dpaper:128
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