Diamond Smuggling and Taxation in Sub-Saharan Africa
24 Pages Posted: 2 Feb 2006
Date Written: August 2003
This paper provides an overview of diamond mining in sub-Saharan African countries, and explores the reasons for substantial differences in their tax rates and fiscal revenues from the sector, which mainly arise from differences in the incentives for smuggling. In a theoretical model, we show that optimal diamond tax rates increase with the degree of competition among diamond buyers, as well as with the corporate share of diamond production, which is confirmed by the data. We then discuss policies to increase revenue, including by enhancing mining productivity, stimulating the exploration of new areas, reducing barriers to entry, and attracting investment into value-adding downstream operations.
Keywords: diamond mining, nonrenewable resource, optimal taxation, tax evasion
JEL Classification: H21, H26, L72, Q32
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation