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Using Tax Incentives to Compete for Foreign Investment : Are They Worth the Costs?

  • Louis T., Jr. Wells
  • Nancy J. Allen
  • Jacques Morisset
  • Neda Pirnia
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    The book contains complementary essays on the use of tax incentives, to attract foreign direct investment (FDI). The first essay presents results of the authors' original research, and explores FDI, and issues of tax incentives, in the context of Indonesia. Their results mostly support the arguments made against incentives, particularly they find little evidence that when Indonesia eliminated tax incentives, there was any decline in the rate of FDI into the country. Similarly, the second essay surveys the research of others on the same topic, and pertaining to the same issues discussed in the first essay. They show that results of other researchers, are generally consistent with the findings of the research in Indonesia, notably that tax incentives, neither affect significantly the amount of direct investment that takes place, nor usually determine the location to which investment is drawn. Nevertheless, recent evidence has shown that when factors such as political, and economic stability, infrastructure, and transport costs are more, or less equal between potential locations, taxes may exert a significant impact. This is evidenced by the growing tax competition in regional groupings (i.e., the European Union) or, at the sub-regional level within one country (i.e., the United States). Both essays provide a basis for much more sophisticated analysis by policymakers than previously, and, both are important because they question governments' institutional arrangements that create agency problems with respect to tax incentive policies.

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    This book is provided by The World Bank in its series World Bank Publications with number 13979 and published in 2001.
    ISBN: 0-8213-4992-9
    Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbpubs:13979
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    Phone: (202) 477-1234
    Web page: https://openknowledge.worldbank.org
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    1. Rosanne Altshuler & Jack Mintz, 1995. "U.S. interest-allocation rules: Effects and policy," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 2(1), pages 7-35, February.
    2. Franklin R Root & Ahmed A Ahmed, 1978. "The influence of policy instruments on manufacturing Direct Foreign investment in developing countries," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 9(3), pages 81-94, September.
    3. Hartman, David G., 1985. "Tax policy and foreign direct investment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 107-121, February.
    4. Michael J. Boskin & William G. Gale, 1986. "New Results on the Effects of Tax Policy on the International Location of Investment," NBER Working Papers 1862, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Oriye Agodo, 1978. "The Determinants of U.S Private Manufacturing Investments in Africa," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 9(3), pages 95-106, September.
    6. Michael Rauscher, 1995. "Environmental regulation and the location of polluting industries," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 2(2), pages 229-244, August.
    7. Hines, James R, Jr, 1996. "Altered States: Taxes and the Location of Foreign Direct Investment in America," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(5), pages 1076-94, December.
    8. James R. Hines, Jr. & R. Glenn Hubbard, 1990. "Coming Home to America: Dividend Repatriations by U.S. Multinationals," NBER Working Papers 2931, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Collins, Julie H. & Shackelford, Douglas A., 1997. "Global organizations and taxes: An analysis of the dividend, interest, royalty, and management fee payments between U.S. multinationals' foreign affiliates," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 151-173, December.
    10. Devereux, Michael P. & Griffith, Rachel, 1998. "Taxes and the location of production: evidence from a panel of US multinationals," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(3), pages 335-367, June.
    11. Joel Slemrod, 1989. "Tax Effects on Foreign Direct Investment in the United States: Evidence from a Cross-Country Comparison," NBER Working Papers 3042, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. Bruce A. Blonigen & Matthew J. Slaughter, 2001. "Foreign-Affiliate Activity And U.S. Skill Upgrading," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 83(2), pages 362-376, May.
    13. Desai, Mihir A. & Hines Jr., James R., 1999. ""Basket cases": Tax incentives and international joint venture participation by American multinational firms," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(3), pages 379-402, March.
    14. David N. Figlio & Bruce A. Blonigen, 1999. "The Effects of Direct Foreign Investment on Local Communities," NBER Working Papers 7274, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    15. Haufler, Andreas & Wooton, Ian, 1999. "Country size and tax competition for foreign direct investment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(1), pages 121-139, January.
    16. David G. Hartman, 1982. "Tax Policy and Foreign Direct Investment in the United States," NBER Working Papers 0967, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    17. Julie Collins & Douglas Shackelford, 1995. "Corporate domicile and average effective tax rates: The cases of Canada, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 2(1), pages 55-83, February.
    18. Robert J Rolfe & David A Ricks & Martha M Pointer & Mark McCarthy, 1993. "Determinants of FDI Incentive Preferences of MNEs," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 24(2), pages 335-355, June.
    19. Alberto Giovannini & R. Glenn Hubbard & Joel Slemrod, 1993. "Studies in International Taxation," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number giov93-1, August.
    20. Grubert, Harry, 1998. "Taxes and the division of foreign operating income among royalties, interest, dividends and retained earnings," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(2), pages 269-290, May.
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