IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/nbr/nberwo/8278.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Ownership and Use Taxes as Congestion Correcting Instruments

Author

Listed:
  • Ngee-Choon Chia
  • Albert K. C. Tsui
  • John Whalley

Abstract

In countries, such as Singapore, that have implemented vehicle congestion policies, recent years have seen a shift towards motor vehicle taxes based on car use. Ownership taxes reduce the number of cars on the road, leaving the price per trip largely unaffected. Use taxes such as fuel taxes and road use charges decrease the price of trips without necessarily penalising vehicle ownership per se. This paper presents a simple general equilibrium model involving trips from residential areas to a central business district, along with modal choice between cars and public transit. Car trips involve fixed costs but have lower variable costs per trip (including convenience costs) then bus trips. Using a calibrated numerical model, we investigate the relative merits of ownership and use taxes. We compare full internalisation of congestion externalities to optimal tax outcomes for the different tax types. In our framework, use taxes restore Pareto optimality since congestion damage rises with more trips. Ownership taxes only partially internalise congestion externalities. However, in terms of revenue-raising ability, the marginal excess burdens of ownership taxes in the neighbourhood of optimal taxes are typically lower than use taxes. This is because marginal increases in ownership taxes take away part of the surplus accruing to consumers who still choose to travel by car, and thus have less distortion at the margin.

Suggested Citation

  • Ngee-Choon Chia & Albert K. C. Tsui & John Whalley, 2001. "Ownership and Use Taxes as Congestion Correcting Instruments," NBER Working Papers 8278, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:8278
    Note: PE
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w8278.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Wilson, Paul W., 1992. "Residential location and scheduling of work hours," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 325-336, May.
    2. Paul W. Wilson, 1989. "Scheduling Costs and the Value of Travel Time," Urban Studies, Urban Studies Journal Limited, vol. 26(3), pages 356-366, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. DE BORGER, Bruno & MAYERES, Inge, "undated". "Taxation of car-ownership, car use and public transport: Insight derived from a discrete choice numerical optimisation model," Working Papers 2004021, University of Antwerp, Faculty of Applied Economics.
    2. De Borger, Bruno & Mulalic, Ismir & Rouwendal, Jan, 2016. "Substitution between cars within the household," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 85(C), pages 135-156.
    3. Santos, Georgina & Behrendt, Hannah & Maconi, Laura & Shirvani, Tara & Teytelboym, Alexander, 2010. "Part I: Externalities and economic policies in road transport," Research in Transportation Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 2-45.
    4. Matthias Wrede, 2003. "Tax Deductibility of Commuting Expenses and Residential Land Use with more than one Center," CESifo Working Paper Series 972, CESifo Group Munich.
    5. Richard Arnott, 2001. "The Economic Theory of Urban Traffic Congestion: A Microscopic Research Agenda," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 502, Boston College Department of Economics.
    6. De Borger, Bruno & Mayeres, Inge, 2007. "Optimal taxation of car ownership, car use and public transport: Insights derived from a discrete choice numerical optimization model," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(5), pages 1177-1204, July.
    7. Button, Kenneth, 2004. "1. The Rationale For Road Pricing: Standard Theory And Latest Advances," Research in Transportation Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(1), pages 3-25, January.
    8. Ling Hui Tan, 2003. "Rationing Rules and Outcomes: The Experience of Singapore's Vehicle Quota System," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 50(3), pages 1-5.
    9. Muthukrishnan, Subhashini, 2010. "Vehicle ownership and usage charges," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 17(6), pages 398-408, November.

    More about this item

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:8278. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: () or (Joanne Lustig). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/nberrus.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.