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Should subsidies to urban passenger transport be increased? A spatial CGE analysis for a German metropolitan area

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  • Tscharaktschiew, Stefan
  • Hirte, Georg

Abstract

The objective of this paper is to examine efficiency, distributional, environmental (CO2 emissions) and spatial effects of increasing different kinds of transport subsidies discriminating between household types, travel purposes and travel modes. The effects are calculated by applying a numerical spatial general equilibrium approach calibrated to an average German metropolitan area. In extension to most studies focusing on only one kind of subsidy, we compare the effects of different transport subsidies within the same unified framework that allows to account for two features not yet considered simultaneously in studies on transport subsidies: endogenous labor supply and location decisions. Furthermore, congestion, travel mode choice, travel related CO2 emissions and institutional details regarding the tax system in Germany are taken into account. The results suggest that optimal subsidy levels are either small or even zero. While subsidizing public transport is welfare enhancing, subsidies to urban road traffic reduce aggregate urban welfare. Concerning the latter it is shown that making investments in urban road infrastructure capacity or reducing gasoline taxes may even be harmful to residents using predominantly automobile. In contrast, pure commuting subsidies hardly affect aggregate urban welfare, but distributional effects are substantial. All policies contribute to urban sprawl by raising the spatial imbalance of residences and jobs but the effect is relatively small. In addition, the policies induce a very differentiated pattern regarding distributional effects, environmental effects and benefits of landowners. --

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Paper provided by Dresden University of Technology, Faculty of Business and Economics, Department of Economics in its series Dresden Discussion Paper Series in Economics with number 01/11.

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Date of creation: 2011
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:tuddps:0111

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Keywords: urban general equilibrium model; transport policy; transport subsidy; commuting;

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Cited by:
  1. Hirte, Georg & Tscharaktschiew, Stefan, 2011. "Income tax deduction of commuting expenses and tax funding in an urban CGE study: the case of German cities," Dresden Discussion Paper Series in Economics 02/11, Dresden University of Technology, Faculty of Business and Economics, Department of Economics.
  2. Drevs, Florian & Tscheulin, Dieter K. & Lindenmeier, Jörg & Renner, Simone, 2014. "Crowding-in or crowding out: An empirical analysis on the effect of subsidies on individual willingness-to-pay for public transportation," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 250-261.
  3. Evangelinos, Christos, 2013. "Interessengruppen und Preissetzung im Verkehr," Discussion Papers 2/2013, Dresden University of Technology, Faculty of Transportation and Traffic Sciences "Friedrich List", Institute for Transport and Economics.
  4. Martijn I. Dr�es & Piet Rietveld†, 2014. "The Effect of Railway Travel on Urban Spatial Structure," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 14-050/VIII, Tinbergen Institute.
  5. Hirte, Georg & Tscharaktschiew, Stefan, 2013. "Income tax deduction of commuting expenses in an urban CGE study: The case of German cities," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(C), pages 11-27.
  6. Nitzsche, Eric & Tscharaktschiew, Stefan, 2013. "Efficiency of speed limits in cities: A spatial computable general equilibrium assessment," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 23-48.
  7. Georg Hirte & Stefan Tscharaktschiew, 2012. "The optimal subsidy on electric vehicles in a metropolitan area - a SCGE study for Germany," ERSA conference papers ersa12p324, European Regional Science Association.
  8. Hirte, Georg & Tscharaktschiew, Stefan, 2013. "The optimal subsidy on electric vehicles in German metropolitan areas: A spatial general equilibrium analysis," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(C), pages 515-528.

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