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Do low corporate income tax rates attract FDI? - Evidence from Central- and East European countries

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  • Christian Bellak
  • Markus Leibrecht

Abstract

Fifty six bilateral country relationships combining 7 home countries from the EU and the US, and 8 Central and East European host countries (CEECs) of foreign direct investment (FDI) from 1995-2003 are used in a panel gravity-model setting to estimate the role of taxation as a determinant of FDI. While gravity variables explain most of the variation of FDI inflows, the bilateral effective average tax rate (beatr) is roughly equally important to other cost-related factors. The semi-elasticity of FDI with respect to taxes is about -4.3. This value is above those of earlier studies in absolute terms and can partly be attributed to using the beatr instead of the statutory tax rate. Our results indicate that tax-lowering strategies of CEEC governments seem to have an important impact on foreign firms location decisions.

Suggested Citation

  • Christian Bellak & Markus Leibrecht, 2009. "Do low corporate income tax rates attract FDI? - Evidence from Central- and East European countries," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 41(21), pages 2691-2703.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:applec:v:41:y:2009:i:21:p:2691-2703
    DOI: 10.1080/00036840701320217
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Claudia M. Buch & Alexander Lipponer, 2006. "Clustering or Competition? The Foreign Investment Behavior of German Banks," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 2(2), May.
    2. Gabor Hunya, 2004. "Manufacturing FDI in New EU Member States - Foreign Penetration and Location Shifts between 1998 and 2002," wiiw Research Reports 311, The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw.
    3. Nigel Pain & Dawn Holland, 1998. "The Diffusion Of Innovations In Central And Eastern Europe: A Study Of The Determinants And Impact O," National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) Discussion Papers 137, National Institute of Economic and Social Research.
    4. Yongcheol Shin & Ron P Smith & Mohammad Hashem Pesaran, 1998. "Pooled Mean Group Estimation of Dynamic Heterogeneous Panels," ESE Discussion Papers 16, Edinburgh School of Economics, University of Edinburgh.
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