Government at a Glance 2015

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Government at a Glance provides readers with a dashboard of key indicators assembled with the goal of contributing to the analysis and international comparison of public sector performance. Indicators on government revenues, expenditures, and employment are provided alongside key output and outcome data in the sectors of education, health and justice. Government at a Glance also includes indicators on key governance and public management issues, such as transparency in governance, regulatory governance, public procurement and the implementation of employment and remuneration reforms since 2009. While measuring government performance has long been recognized as playing an important role in increasing the effectiveness and efficiency of the public administration, following the economic crisis and fiscal tightening in many member countries, good indicators are needed more than ever to help governments make informed decisions regarding tough choices and help restore confidence in government institutions.

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Revenue structure by level of government

Revenues are collected differently across central, state and local governments as they differ in terms of their ability to levy taxes and collect social contributions. The amount of taxes collected by sub-central governments provides a proxy of their autonomous fiscal capacity, while the volume of the revenue transfers between levels of government can be considered a proxy of the fiscal interdependence. However, revenues include both own-source taxes and shared taxes and for these latter, there is no autonomous fiscal capacity. Limits on sub-central governments’ ability to set their own local tax bases, rates and reliefs reduce their power to generate their own revenue sources and potentially their ability to provide more tailored public goods and services.

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