Western Hemisphere > Honduras

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Aqib Aslam and Maria Delgado Coelho
This paper examines the role of minimum taxes and attempts to quantify their impact on economic activity. Minimum taxes can be effective at shoring up the corporate tax base and enhancing the perceived equity of the tax system, potentially motivating broader taxpayer compliance. Where political and administrative constraints prevent reforms to the standard corporate income tax, a minimum tax can help mitigate base erosion from excessive tax incentives and avoidance. Using a new panel dataset that catalogues changes in minimum tax regimes over time around the world, firm-level analysis suggests that the introduction or reform of a minimum tax is associated with an increase in the average effective tax rate of just over 1.5 percentage points with respect to turnover and of around 10 percent with respect to operating income. Minimum taxes based on modified corporate income lead to the largest increases in effective tax rates, followed by those based on assets and turnover.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
This paper discusses Honduras’s 2019 Article IV Consultation and Request for a Stand-By Arrangement and an Arrangement Under the Standby Credit Facility. Supported by a Fund program that expired in December 2017, Honduras has reduced macroeconomic imbalances, institutionalized fiscal prudence, and laid the groundwork for a modern monetary policy framework. The authorities are committed to maintain prudent policies and to build on previous achievements to make progress in solving long-standing issues. The authorities’ economic program aims at maintaining macroeconomic stability, while enacting economic and institutional reforms to foster inclusive growth. Honduras needs to foster inclusive growth through reforms and better governance. Policy priorities include: reforms to increase the quality of fiscal policy, sustaining revenue mobilization efforts, protecting investment and social spending, and securing financial sustainability of the public electricity company; and reforms to enhance transparency and governance in the budget.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
The IMF-supported program (2014-17) succeeded in reducing Honduras' macroeconomic imbalances. The next step is to adopt institutional reforms to entrench macroeconomic stability to put Honduras on a higher potential growth path.
Ms. Stefania Fabrizio, Davide Furceri, Mr. Rodrigo Garcia-Verdu, Ms. Grace B Li, Mrs. Sandra V Lizarazo Ruiz, Ms. Marina Mendes Tavares, Mr. Futoshi Narita, and Adrian Peralta
Despite sustained economic growth and rapid poverty reductions, income inequality remains stubbornly high in many low-income developing countries. This pattern is a concern as high levels of inequality can impair the sustainability of growth and macroeconomic stability, thereby also limiting countries’ ability to reach the Sustainable Development Goals. This underscores the importance of understanding how policies aimed at boosting economic growth affect income inequality. Using empirical and modeling techniques, the note confirms that macro-structural policies aimed at raising growth payoffs in low-income developing countries can have important distributional consequences, with the impact dependent on both the design of reforms and on country-specific economic characteristics. While there is no one-size-fits-all recipe, the note explores how governments can address adverse distributional consequences of reforms by designing reform packages to make pro-growth policies also more inclusive.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
This 2016 Article IV Consultation highlights that the real output of Honduras in 2015 grew at 3.6 percent, slightly higher than projected. From the demand side, growth was supported by the recovery in private consumption—which responded positively to a reduction in gasoline prices and strong remittances inflows—and a boost in investment. On the supply side, the recovery in manufacturing and agriculture supported greater activity. The outlook for 2016 remains favorable. Real GDP through the second quarter of 2016 grew by 4.1 percent (year over year) broadly consistent with IMF staff projection of 3.6 percent for 2016. This projected growth performance is supported by scaled up public infrastructure investment and a supportive monetary policy stance.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
This paper discusses Honduras’ Second Review Under the Stand-by Arrangement (SBA) and the Arrangement under the Standby Credit Facility (SCF). All 2015 end-June performance criteria and indicative targets were met, most with significant margins. On the structural side, June and September 2015 benchmarks were broadly observed. The revised program proposed for 2016 envisages a further strengthening of fiscal and net international reserve targets. The authorities are pressing ahead with structural reforms, including the introduction of a Fiscal Responsibility Law, an overhaul of tax administration, and reforms to the Honduran Social Security Institute. Based on performance to date and the authorities’ updated intentions and commitments, the IMF staff recommends completion of the second review under the SBA/SCF arrangement.
International Monetary Fund. Western Hemisphere Dept.
This paper discusses Honduras’ First Reviews Under the Stand-by Arrangement (SBA) and Standby Credit Facility (SCF). Program implementation for the first reviews has been strong. All 2014 performance criteria and indicative targets were met, most with significant margins. The authorities have also created fiscal space within the program to increase social spending and support efforts to reduce poverty. On the structural side, December 2014 and March 2015 benchmarks were also generally observed. The revised program proposed for 2015 envisages further strengthening fiscal and net international reserves targets. The IMF staff supports the completion of the first reviews under the SBA and the SCF Arrangements.
Ms. Evridiki Tsounta and Anayochukwu Osueke
Income inequality in Latin America has declined during the last decade, in contrast to the experience in many other emerging and developed regions. However, Latin America remains the most unequal region in the world. This study documents the declining trend in income inequality in Latin America and proposes various reasons behind this important development. Using a panel econometric analysis for a large group of emerging and developing countries, we find that the Kuznets curve holds. Notwithstanding the limitations in the dataset and of cross-country regression analysis more generally, our results suggest that almost two-thirds of the recent decline in income inequality in Latin America is explained by policies and strong GDP growth, with policies alone explaining more than half of this total decline. Higher education spending is the most important driver, followed by stronger foreign direct investment and higher tax revenues. Results suggest that policies and to some extent positive growth dynamics could play an important role in lowering inequality further.