Identifying Fiscal Space: Options for Social and Economic Development for Children and Poor Households in 184 Countries
66 Pages Posted: 20 Oct 2011 Last revised: 25 Jan 2012
Date Written: October 17, 2011
It is often argued that social and economic investments that benefit children and poor households are not affordable or that government expenditure cuts are inevitable during adjustment periods. But there are alternatives, even in the poorest countries.
This working paper offers an array of options that can be explored to expand fiscal space. These include: (i) re-allocating public expenditures, (ii) increasing tax revenues, (iii) lobbying for increased aid and transfers, (iv) tapping into fiscal and foreign exchange reserves, (v) borrowing and restructuring existing debt, and/or (vi) adopting a more accommodative macroeconomic framework. To serve as a general advocacy resource, the annex provides a summary of the latest fiscal space indicators for 182 countries.
Keywords: fiscal space, fiscal consolidation, public expenditures, social spending, crisis recovery, development policy, equity, tax revenues, foreign reserves, official development assistance, government borrowing, debt, expansionary fiscal, monetary policy
JEL Classification: F35, H12, H2, H5, H6, H62, H63, I38, O2, O23
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation