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Company Tax Reform in the European Union

  • Peter Birch Sørensen

    (Economic Policy Research Unit, Institute of Economics, University of Copenhagen)

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    The European Commission recently proposed to move towards a consolidated tax base for European multinational companies, to be allocated across EU member states through a system of formula apportionment. This paper argues that while the Commission’s four alternative blueprints for company tax reform may reduce existing problems of transfer pricing, they will also create new distortions as long as existing tax rate differentials are maintained. The paper also analyzes the changes in international tax spillovers which will occur as a result of a switch from the current system of separate accounting to formula apportionment. The final part of the paper discusses whether more conventional corporate tax harmonization should still be a long term policy goal for the EU and presents quantitative estimates of the effciency gains from harmonization.

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    File URL: http://www.econ.ku.dk/epru/files/wp/wp-03-08.pdf
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    Paper provided by Economic Policy Research Unit (EPRU), University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics in its series EPRU Working Paper Series with number 03-08.

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    Length: 43 pages
    Date of creation: Jun 2003
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:kud:epruwp:03-08
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    Web page: http://www.econ.ku.dk/epru/
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    1. Nielsen, Søren Bo & Raimondos-Møller, Pascalis & Schjederup, Guttorm, 2000. "Formula Apportionment And Transfer Pricing Under Oligopolistic Competition," Working Papers 18-2000, Copenhagen Business School, Department of Economics.
    2. Richard Baldwin; Paul Krugman, 2001. "Agglomeration, Integration and Tax Harmonization," IHEID Working Papers 01-2001, Economics Section, The Graduate Institute of International Studies.
    3. Mintz, Jack & Weiner, Joann Martens, 2003. "Exploring Formula Allocation for the European Union," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 10(6), pages 695-711, November.
    4. Gordon, Roger H & Wilson, John Douglas, 1986. "An Examination of Multijurisdictional Corporate Income Taxation under Formula Apportionment," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(6), pages 1357-73, November.
    5. Guttorm Schjelderup & Lars Sorgard, 1997. "Transfer Pricing as a Strategic Device for Decentralized Multinationals," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 4(3), pages 277-290, July.
    6. Joann Weiner, 2002. "Formula Apportionment in the European Union: A Dream Come True or the EU’s Worst Nightmare?," CESifo Working Paper Series 667, CESifo Group Munich.
    7. Wolfgang Eggert & Guttorm Schjelderup, 2003. "Symmetric Tax Competition under Formula Apportionment," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 5(2), pages 439-446, 04.
    8. Jeremy Edwards & Michael Keen, 1994. "Tax competition and Leviathon," IFS Working Papers W94/07, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
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