Fiscal space for domestic funding of health and other social services

March 2014
Di McIntyre, Filip Meheus

This paper was written as part of the Chatham House Working Group on Financing, of which RESYST researcher Diane McIntyre is a member. 

It finds that there is a need to increase government expenditure on health and other social services in many countries in order to achieve universal health coverage (UHC) and promote inclusive social and economic development. 

While government revenue generation is influenced by a wide range of factors, there are mechanisms whereby each country can seek to increase revenue and push the envelope of maximum available resources for meeting fundamental human rights. The emphasis should be on increasing revenue through the most progressive means possible.

The paper sets out options for boosting government revenue including:  

  • Ensuring that government revenue from natural resources is maximized and not exploited by private or foreign groups.
  • Ensuring good tax compliance by taking steps to reduce tax avoidance and evasion.
  • Assessing whether tax rates on personal income and company profits can be raised 
Financing Fiscal space