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Integration effect on taxation in the EU

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  • V. Melnyk, T. Koschuk

Abstract

Tax policy and changes in taxation in the EU due to the strengthening of the integration processes are investigated. The features of tax harmonization development, national tax systems and tax convergence in the EU are analyzed. The authors found out that intensification of integration processes resulted in: 1) gradual "convergence" of indirect taxation mechanisms in the EU (also had a significant impact on the distribution of the VAT, its reformation and establishment as one of the main sources of tax revenue); 2) implementation, by a number of EU members states, of the strategy of active tax liberalization to encourage foreign investment and thereby reduce their backlog in the level of economic development from the countries that initiated the integration, which resulted in increased difference in the taxation pattern between the EU member states. The following observations were made: on the one hand, improvements in harmonization of VAT and specific excises took place that facilitated the strengthening of fiscal role and convergence between the shares of indirect taxes in GDP in the EU, and, on the other hand, establishment of lower tax ratio than the EU-15 average by Ireland and most post-socialist EU member states. Among the constraints to tax harmonization and tax convergence in the EU, the major are different national possibilities to accumulate direct taxes and social contributions, and differences in the institutional environment for the transformation of taxation in the "old" and "new" member states. However, a gradual reduction of the difference in economic development in the EU and progress in the development of market economy in the post-socialist countries with the implementation of similar tax reforms by national governments to address such problems may promote further tax harmonization and the "convergence" of the tax systems in the EU.

Suggested Citation

  • V. Melnyk, T. Koschuk, 2014. "Integration effect on taxation in the EU," Economy and Forecasting, Valeriy Heyets, issue 4, pages 136-150.
  • Handle: RePEc:eip:journl:y:2014:i:4:p:136-150
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