Working Paper
Toward closer cohesion of international tax statistics

The ICTD/UNU-WIDER GRD 2017

The Government Revenue Dataset (GRD) was launched in September 2014 and, in the few years since, has gone on to be recognized as the go-to source for researchers and policymakers seeking cross-country data on government revenues and taxes. However, as with any such project, successive rounds of updates have led to new challenges.

This paper describes in depth some of the changes compared to older versions of the GRD, which are the result of learning during the update process, user feedback and changes to the underlying source data. It is not the intention to repeat the original motivations behind the dataset; these are covered in depth in Prichard et al. (2014).

Particular attention is paid to the nuances of (i) how social security contributions are recorded in the OECD Revenue Statistics and IMF’s Government Finance Statistics (GFS) (ii) the treatment of VAT or excises collected on imports and the classification of some property taxes.