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Optimal Tax Routing: Network Analysis of FDI diversion

Author

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  • Maarten van 't Riet

    () (CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis)

  • Arjan Lejour

    () (CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis)

Abstract

The international corporate tax system is considered as a network and, just like for transportation, ‘shortest’ paths are computed, minimizing tax payments for multinational enterprises when repatriating profits. We include corporate income tax rates, withholding taxes on dividends, double tax treaties and the double taxation relief methods. We find that treaty shopping leads to an average potential reduction of the tax burden on repatriated dividends of about 6 percentage points. Moreover, an indicator for centrality in the tax network identifies the United Kingdom, Luxembourg and the Netherlands, amongst others, as the most important conduit countries. Tax havens do not have a crucial role in treaty shopping. In the regression analysis we find that the centrality indicators are robustly significant explanatory variables for bilateral FDI stocks. This also holds for our treaty shopping indicator.

Suggested Citation

  • Maarten van 't Riet & Arjan Lejour, 2017. "Optimal Tax Routing: Network Analysis of FDI diversion," CPB Discussion Paper 349, CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpb:discus:349
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. European Commission, 2017. "Tax Policies in the European Union: 2017 Survey," Taxation Survey 2016, Directorate General Taxation and Customs Union, European Commission.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F23 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - Multinational Firms; International Business
    • H25 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Business Taxes and Subsidies
    • H26 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Tax Evasion and Avoidance
    • H87 - Public Economics - - Miscellaneous Issues - - - International Fiscal Issues; International Public Goods

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