Download this publication


Angola experienced an extraordinary oil boom between 2004 and 2014. During this period, oil revenue accounted for 80% of all government revenue. In 2011, the Government of Angola started implementing a non-oil tax reform. The main objective of this reform was to reduce the Government’s dependency on oil revenues by broadening the tax base and improving tax administration. This paper examines the achievements of the Angolan tax reform with respect to revenue generation. We find that the non-oil tax revenues, as a share of total revenue, have increased since the reform was initiated, largely due to the fall in oil revenues since 2014. However, the share of non-oil taxes to GDP remains mostly the same today as at the beginning of the oil boom. The reform has not effectuated any fundamental shift in state-society relations. A regime that has been fueled by massive revenues from natural resource extraction cannot easily alter state-society relations through a major tax reform without threatening the stability of the regime. Developing the non-oil tax system remains as urgent today as it was when the tax reform started.

Odd-Helge Fjeldstad

Research Professor, Coordinator: Tax and Public Finance