Everything changes to remain the same? State and tax reform in South SudanEverything changes to remain the same? State and tax reform in South Sudan
Institute of Development Policy and Management
Development processes, actors and policies
Journal of modern African studies. - Cambridge, 1963, currens
54(2016):2, p. 263-292
University of Antwerp
South Sudan is in a unique combination of (post)-conflict reconstruction and the birth of a new state in which old policies are re-activated and new policies introduced. By looking at three case-studies of taxation and private sector regulation reforms, the paper will show how the overlapping and often contradictory regulatory frameworks of the state provide the setting for bricolage strategies by different actors. These actors, and particularly state officials, rely on a variety of institutional resources to implement, resist or remake certain regulatory measures. Although the breadth of regulatory measures has increased exponentially, the institutional corridor the space in which bricolage is performed and on which various actors can rely remains narrow. This space is contingent on wartime authority structures, and more particularly pre-existing Sudan's People Liberation Army/Movement (SPLA/M) power structures, as well as a deep-rooted resistance to centralised control. Importantly, these regulatory practices are not fixed: intense periods of rearrangement of the social order or open moments may provide a window of opportunity for regulatory reform.