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Preferential Trade Agreements and Tax Competition for Foreign Direct Investment

  • Horst Raff

This paper examines how free-trade agreements and customs unions affect the location of foreign direct investment (FDI) and social welfare, taking into account that governments may adjust taxes and external tariffs to compete for FDI. Conditions are identified under which a free-trade agreement leads to FDI and under which this improves welfare. The welfare effect is shown to depend on the relative size of efficiency gains in production and government revenue losses due to tax competition. A free-trade agreement may fail to induce welfare-improving FDI, creating a role for a customs union.

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Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 763.

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Date of creation: 2002
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_763
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  1. 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.
  2. Bond, Eric W & Guisinger, Stephen E, 1985. "Investment Incentives as Tariff Substitutes: A Comprehensive Measure of Protection," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 67(1), pages 91-97, February.
  3. Markusen, James R., 2002. "Multinational Firms and the Theory of International Trade," MPRA Paper 8380, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  4. Barros, Pedro P & Cabral, Luis, 2000. "Competing for Foreign Direct Investment," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 8(2), pages 360-71, May.
  5. Eckard Janeba, . "Tax Competition in Imperfectly Competitive Markets," Discussion Paper Serie A 513, University of Bonn, Germany.
  6. Ethier, Wilfred, 1996. "Regionalism in a multilateral world," Discussion Papers, Series II 314, University of Konstanz, Collaborative Research Centre (SFB) 178 "Internationalization of the Economy".
  7. Pain, Nigel, 1997. "Continental Drift: European Integration and the Location of U.K. Foreign Direct Investment," The Manchester School of Economic & Social Studies, University of Manchester, vol. 65(0), pages 94-117, Supplemen.
  8. Roger H. Gordon & James R. Hines Jr., 2002. "International Taxation," NBER Working Papers 8854, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Massimo Motta & George Norman, 1993. "Does economic integration cause foreign direct investment?," Economics Working Papers 28, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  10. Keen, Michael, 2001. "Preferential Regimes Can Make Tax Competition Less Harmful," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 54(n. 4), pages 757-62, December.
  11. Neary, J Peter, 2002. "Foreign Direct Investment and the Single Market," CEPR Discussion Papers 3419, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  12. Davies, Ronald B., 2005. "State tax competition for foreign direct investment: a winnable war?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 498-512, December.
  13. 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.
  14. Agnès Bénassy-Quéré & Lionel Fontagné & Amina Lahrèche-Revil, 2000. "Foreign Direct Investment and the Prospects for Tax Co-Ordination in Europe," Working Papers 2000-06, CEPII research center.
  15. Doyle, Christopher & van Wijnbergen, Sweder, 1984. "Taxation of Foreign Multinationals: A Sequential Bargaining Approach to Tax Holidays," CEPR Discussion Papers 25, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  16. Horstmann, Ignatius J. & Markusen, James R., 1992. "Endogenous market structures in international trade (natura facit saltum)," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(1-2), pages 109-129, February.
  17. Bond, Eric W. & Samuelson, Larry, 1989. "Bargaining with commitment, choice of techniques, and direct foreign investment," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(1-2), pages 77-97, February.
  18. Wilson, John Douglas, 1999. "Theories of Tax Competition," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 52(n. 2), pages 269-304, June.
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