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Tax Competition and Public Input

  • Agnès Bénassy-Quéré

    (CEPII)

  • Nicolas Gobalraja

    (THEMA (University Paris X) and CEPII)

  • Alain Trannoy

    (GREQAM-IDEP, L’Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS), Paris)

This paper assesses the extent and policy implications of simultaneous competition among countries on both corporate tax rates and the provision of public goods used by firms as production factors (‘public factors’). First, we derive the relevant theoretical results in a unified framework where a corporate tax is used to finance a public good that raises both household utility and firm productivity. Then, the relevance of such simultaneous competition is tested using data on foreign direct investment from the US to EU member states. Both the theoretical analysis and the empirical results presented in this paper suggest that focusing on the tax side of the competition for the location of multinationals is misleading. It shows that there are grounds for the coexistence of high tax/spending countries and low tax/spending ones. Furthermore, provided multinationals are heterogeneous concerning their use of public factors, the competition for attracting them could take the form of a vertical or horizontal specialisation, whereby each government would seek to attract a certain type of activity through the adequate provision of certain public factors. In this framework, international competition could act as a vector for raising public-sector efficiency rather than as a standardisation factor.

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Paper provided by European Network of Economic Policy Research Institutes in its series Economics Working Papers with number 040.

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Length: 24 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:epr:enepwp:040
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  1. Antoine Bouët & Yvan Decreux & Lionel Fontagné & Sébastien Jean & David Laborde, 2004. "A Consistent, Ad-Valorem Equivalent Measure of Applied Protection Across the World: The MAcMap-HS6 Database," Working Papers 2004-22, CEPII research center.
  2. Anindya Banerjee & Paolo Zanghieri, 2003. "A New Look at the Feldstein-Horioka Puzzle using an Integrated Panel," Working Papers 2003-22, CEPII research center.
  3. Guillaume Gaulier & Sébastien Jean & Deniz Ünal-Kesenci, 2004. "Regionalism and the Regionalisation of International Trade," Working Papers 2004-16, CEPII research center.
  4. Lionel Fontagné & Jean-Louis Guérin & Sébastien Jean, 2003. "Market Access Liberalisation in the Doha Round: Scenarios and Assessment," Working Papers 2003-12, CEPII research center.
  5. Nabil Annabi & Fatou Cissé & John Cockburn & Bernard Decaluwé, 2005. "Trade Liberalisation, Growth and Poverty in Senegal: a Dynamic Microsimulation CGE Model Analysis," Working Papers 2005-07, CEPII research center.
  6. Alexander Hijzen & Peter Wright, 2005. "Migration, Trade and Wages," Working Papers 2005-06, CEPII research center.
  7. Jean-Christophe Bureau & Antoine Bouet, Yvan Decreux, Sébastien Jean, 2005. "Multilateral agricultural trade liberalization: The contrasting fortunes of developing countries in the Doha Round," The Institute for International Integration Studies Discussion Paper Series iiisdp060, IIIS.
  8. Nanno Mulder & Alexandre Vialou & Beatriz David & Monica Rodriguez & Marta Castilho, 2004. "La compétitivité de l’agriculture et des industries agroalimentaires dans le Mercosur et l’Union européenne dans une perspective de libéralisation commerciale," Working Papers 2004-19, CEPII research center.
  9. Todd M. Gabe & Kathleen P. Bell, 2004. "Tradeoffs between Local Taxes and Government Spending as Determinants of Business Location," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(1), pages 21-41.
  10. Michel Beine & Agnès Bénassy-Quéré & Hélène Colas, 2003. "Imitation Amongst Exchange-Rate Forecasters: Evidence from Survey Data," Working Papers 2003-08, CEPII research center.
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