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R&D Tax Credits across the European Union:Divergences and convergence

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  • Laurence Jacquet
  • Stéphane Robin

    (CY Cergy Paris Université, THEMA)

Abstract

We examine the R&D, innovation and productivity effects of R&D tax credits (R&DTC) in 8 EU countries, in the context of a proposed EU-wide "super deduction" on R&D expenditures. Our econometric analysis, performed on industry-level panel data, shows that past R&D feeds current R&D, whether it is conducted under an R&DTC or not. Our estimate of additionality during an R&DTC phase is generally close to 1. R&D intensity also affects patenting intensity positively in Belgium, Czech Republic, France, Spain and the UK, but this relationship is R&DTC-related only in Belgium, France and Spain. Only in France and the UK do we observe a full (yet fragile) R&D – innovation – productivity relationship. In the UK, this relationship is not affected by the R&DTC scheme. In France, a 1% increase in R&D conducted under the second to fourth phases of R&DTC (1999-2017) entails a cumulated 0.37% increase in patenting intensity, which translates to a 0.16% increase in productivity. The main policy implication of these results is that a "super-deduction" on R&D is likely to help the EU reach its "R&D at 3% of GDP" objective, but only time will tell how generous it must be to really spur innovation and productivity.

Suggested Citation

  • Laurence Jacquet & Stéphane Robin, 2021. "R&D Tax Credits across the European Union:Divergences and convergence," THEMA Working Papers 2021-14, THEMA (THéorie Economique, Modélisation et Applications), Université de Cergy-Pontoise.
  • Handle: RePEc:ema:worpap:2021-14
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    R&D Tax Credits; Public Support to R&D; Science and Technology Policy; European Policy;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • O38 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Government Policy
    • H25 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Business Taxes and Subsidies
    • H54 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Infrastructures

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