Tackling Tax and Saving Lives

Children, tax and financing for development

July 2014


We are at a critical juncture in the history of human development: an end to extreme poverty is within our reach. The process of defining the post-2015 development framework presents us with a unique opportunity to grasp this vision and translate it into reality.

But the key question is where will the money come from? Considerable sums of additional finance are needed. One certainty is that the majority of it will have to come from developing countries themselves.

Tackling Tax and Saving Lives presents new research on illicit financial flows (IFFs) – the illegal flows of money out of developing countries via tax evasion, bribery, money laundering and manipulation of trade prices.

In particular, it reveals the links between IFFs, taxation, public spending and children’s well-being (in terms of child mortality and access to clean water). Improving tax-take and tackling IFFs, this report demonstrates, can help us to get to zero preventable child deaths.

Save the Children’s proposals for improving tax collection and addressing IFFs include support to tax authorities in developing countries, and action in richer countries to improve transparency and to clamp down on financial secrecy – particularly in so-called tax havens.

This report puts forward a set of concrete recommendations to governments, businesses and multilateral institutions.


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