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International Resource Tax Policies Beyond Rent Extraction

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Abstract

We study the incentives of selfish governments to tax tradable primary inputs un- der asymmetric trade. Using an empirically-consistent model of endogenous growth, we obtain explicit links between persistent gaps in productivity growth and the observed tendency of resource-exporting (importing) countries to subsidize (tax) domestic resource use. Assuming uncoordinated maximization of domestic welfare, national governments wish to deviate (i) from inefficient laissez-faire equilibria as well as (ii) from efficient equilibria in which domestic distortions are internalized. The incentive of resource-rich countries to subsidize hinges on slower productivity growth and is disconnected from the typical incentive of importers to tax resource inflows. i.e., rent extraction. The model predictions concerning the impact of resource taxes on relative income shares are supported by empirical evidence.

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Paper provided by CER-ETH - Center of Economic Research (CER-ETH) at ETH Zurich in its series CER-ETH Economics working paper series with number 13/185.

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Length: 47 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2013
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Handle: RePEc:eth:wpswif:13-185

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Keywords: Productivity Growth; Exhaustible Resources; International Trade.;

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  1. Robinson, James A & Torvik, Ragnar & Verdier, Thierry, 2002. "Political Foundations of the Resource Curse," CEPR Discussion Papers 3422, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  3. Luis A. Rivera-Batiz & Paul M. Romer, 1990. "Economic Integration and Endogenous Growth," NBER Working Papers 3528, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Grimaud, André, 2007. "On the North-South Effects of Environmental Policy: Rent Transfers, Relocation, Incentives to Research and Growth," IDEI Working Papers 477, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
  5. Liski, Matti & Tahvonen, Olli, 2004. "Can carbon tax eat OPEC's rents?," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 47(1), pages 1-12, January.
  6. Santiago J. Rubio & Luisa Escriche, 1998. "- Strategic Pigouvian Taxation, Stock Externalities And Polluting Non-Renewable Resources," Working Papers. Serie EC 1998-23, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).
  7. Bretschger, Lucas & Valente, Simone, 2012. "Endogenous growth, asymmetric trade and resource dependence," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 64(3), pages 301-311.
  8. World Bank, 2009. "World Development Indicators 2009," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 4367, August.
  9. Amundsen, E.S. & Schob, R., 1999. "Environmental Taxes on Exhaustible Resources," Norway; Department of Economics, University of Bergen 192, Department of Economics, University of Bergen.
  10. Julien Daubanes & André Grimaud, 2010. "Taxation of a Polluting Non-renewable Resource in the Heterogeneous World," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 47(4), pages 567-588, December.
  11. Lucas Bretschger & Simone Valente, 2010. "Endogenous Growth, Asymmetric Trade and Resource Taxation," CER-ETH Economics working paper series 10/132, CER-ETH - Center of Economic Research (CER-ETH) at ETH Zurich.
  12. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1988. "On the mechanics of economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-42, July.
  13. Sanjeev Gupta & Benedict J. Clements & Kevin Fletcher & Gabriela Inchauste, 2002. "Issues in Domestic Petroleum Pricing in Oil-Producing Countries," IMF Working Papers 02/140, International Monetary Fund.
  14. Bergstrom, Theodore C, 1982. "On Capturing Oil Rents with a National Excise Tax," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(1), pages 194-201, March.
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