Pilot of Simplified Approach to Property Identification and Valuation in Togo

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In a significant move towards decentralization, Togo conducted its first subnational elections in several decades in 2019, sparking discussions about revenue generation for the newly established municipalities. This transition has highlighted the need to develop robust mechanisms for revenue collection, particularly in property taxation, to the benefit of local governments.

Recognizing this critical juncture, LoGRI embarked on a collaborative initiative with Togolese government officials. The project commenced with a field mission in May 2023, where our team engaged in a rapid diagnostic assessment to understand the current state of property taxation in Togo. Following this, LoGRI proposed a pilot to the Office Togolais des Recettes (OTR), aimed at enhancing the national tax administration’s capacity for property tax management.

This pilot project is designed to collect and analyze data to compare different property census and valuation methods, namely simplified and traditional approaches. The goal is to determine the most effective method in terms of cost-efficiency, tax base expansion, tax potential, as well as valuation accuracy and equity. This initiative is pivotal in establishing a feasible and sustainable property tax management system in Togo.

At the heart of this project is LoGRI’s expertise in simplified property identification and valuation methods, adapted to fit Togo’s unique legislative context. By comparing these approaches with those currently employed by the administration, the project aims to lay a solid foundation for a long-term, effective property tax management system, thus supporting Togo’s broader decentralization and economic development goals.


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Project Team

Chair

Policy Lead

Doctoral Fellow


Photo credit to Francisco Anzola

Wilson Prichard

Chair

Dr Wilson Prichard is an Associate Professor at the University of Toronto’s Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy and Department of Political Science, a Research Fellow at the Institute of Development Studies, Executive Director of the ICTD and Chair of the LoGRI program. His research focuses on the political economy of tax reform in lower-income countries and the relationship between taxation and citizen demands for improved governance in Sub-Saharan Africa, with a particular focus on sub-Saharan Africa.  He is the authors of Taxation, Responsiveness and Accountability in Sub-Saharan Africa: The Dynamics of Tax Bargaining (Cambridge University Press, 2015), Taxing Africa: Coercion, Reform and Development (Zed Press, 2018) and Innovations in Tax Compliance: Building Trust, Navigating Politics and Tailoring Reform (World Bank, 2022), along with a range of academic articles.


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Camille Barras

Policy Lead

Camille Barras is the Policy Lead for the Local Government Revenue Initiative (LoGRI). Her areas of work and interest encompass public governance and administration, subnational governance, intergovernmental relations and state-society relations – and their connection with taxation. She is also interested in questions related to the effectiveness and evolution of international development as a field, in evidence generation and uptake as well as in research methods (quantitative, mixed, evaluation). She completed, in 2023, a PhD at the University of Cambridge, investigating the effects of decentralization on political attitudes and behaviours, and holds academic qualifications in political science, public policy and law. Previously, she worked during seven years at the intersection of practice and research, mainly in the international development sector across a variety of organizations and projects in West/North Africa, South/East Asia and Europe. Among others, she worked for a local governance project at UNDP, was a project manager for impact evaluations at the Center for Evaluation and Development and consulted for the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation.


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Nicolas Orgeira Pillai

Doctoral Fellow

Nicolas Orgeira Pillai is a Doctoral Fellow with LoGRI. His research focuses on local revenue mobilisation, with a particular interest in property taxation and tax compliance. Through the use of impact evaluation approaches and quantitative analysis, his work aims to support tax administrations in implementing state-building tax reforms that improves governance and the relationship between the government and the citizens. His projects also relate to tax administration, gender and taxation, and the informal economy. He holds a master’s in economics at the University of Toronto and is a doctoral candidate in Economics at the University of Sussex.


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