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A new direction for Inland Revenue in the Solomon Islands (A) 2016-43.1

4 March 2016



In 2010 the Solomon Islands Inland Revenue Division met for their annual strategic planning day, with cause for satisfaction. That year, they had collected a record SI$1 billion in revenue, a milestone for the Division, Ministry of Finance and Treasury, and for a country still struggling to rebuild from the civil conflict that had engulfed it from 1998 to 2003. Still, there was work to be done. A 2011 People’s Survey showed that many Solomon Islanders – particularly those living in rural areas – were confused about the tax system, how revenue was used, and what their obligations were. Moreover, in the business community tax was not necessarily perceived as a public good. To tackle these problems, the Inland Revenue Division established an education scheme that could target even the remotest parts of the country to explain how tax was collected and what it paid for. As public understanding increased, the Division also sought to harden their compliance measures.

This two-part case can be used to discuss public sector reform, particularly in finance and taxation and in the context of a department recovering from years of civil unrest. Part A briefly describes the background to reform before describing initiatives taken by the Inland Revenue Division to boost the taxation system of Solomon Islands. It can be used to discuss means of boosting public insight into governmental systems through an effective communications strategy, and approaches to improving compliance.

Read more:

  • part B describes internal culture reform and can be used to discuss organisational communication strategies and the value of a confident workforce.
Authors: Margot Schwass
Published Date: 4 March 2016
Author Institution: ANZSOG
Content Length: 5
Product Type: Part A, Primary resources