TaxProf Blog

Editor: Paul L. Caron, Dean
Pepperdine University School of Law

Monday, October 17, 2011

ATPI Hosts Conference Today on International Taxation and Competitiveness

ATPI LogoThe American Tax Policy Institute hosts a conference today on International Taxation and Competitiveness at Skadden (New York). The organizers are Reuven Avi-Yonah (Michigan) & Jane Gravelle (Congressional Research Service).

Since 1961, when the Kennedy Administration first proposed ending deferral, the worldwide vs. territorial debate in the US has centered on the issue of the competitiveness of US-based MNEs. At the moment, the Obama Administration’s proposals to limit deferral are stuck in Congress in the face of the competitiveness argument. Other proposals, such as the Wyden/Coates bill to eliminate deferral, are unlikely to advance for the same reason. Competitiveness is also highlighted in the tax reform options report by the President’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board, which includes both territoriality and ending deferral as options for US international tax reform, and by the Deficit Reduction Commission.

The problem is that neither side has factual support for their argument about whether the U.S. tax system, including Subpart F, as currently enacted or with any of the proposed reforms, in fact negatively impacts the tax burden of US-based MNEs. Even the concept of competitiveness itself is unclear. Despite numerous claims, there has been no rigorous attempt that we are aware of to determine whether MNEs based in our major trading partners in fact have a tax advantage or disadvantage because of Subpart F or other rules. This conference is designed to address these issues in a systematic way, and to form the basis for a better informed policy debate going forward. We would also like to place the competitiveness of US-based MNEs in a broader context, including consideration of taxes other than the corporate income tax. The conference papers will be published in the Tax Law Review.

Panel #1: The Meaning of “Competitiveness” and “Competitive Disadvantage”

  • Victoria Perry (American Tax Policy Institute and IMF) (moderator)
  • Jane Gravelle (Congressional Research Service), Does the Concept of Competitiveness Have Meaning in Formulating Corporate Tax Policy?
  • Michael Knoll (Pennsylvania), The Connection between Taxation and Competitiveness
  • Eric Toder (Urban Brookings Tax Policy Center)

Panel #2: Comparing Subpart F with the CFC Rules of Other Countries

Subpanel A: Europe

  • Brian Arnold (Canadian Tax Foundation) (moderator)
  • Steve Edge (Slaughter & May)
  • Malcolm Gammie (Chambers of Lord Grabiner, QC)
  • Carlo Garbarino (Bocconi)
  • Friedhelm Jacob (Hengeler Mueller)

 Subpanel B: America and Asia

  • Philip West (Steptoe & Johnson) (moderator)
  • Takeshi Fujitani (Hokkaido University)
  • Chang Hee Lee (Seoul National University)
  • Tizhong Liao (State Admin. of Taxation, PRC)
  • Linneu Mello (FGV, Rio de Janeiro)

Panel #3: Empirical Research on Competitiveness

  • Jane Gravelle (Congressional Research Service) (moderator)
  • Kimberly Clausing (Reed College), In Search of Corporate Tax Incidence
  • Lisa Costa (IRS) & Jennifer Gravelle (CBO), Taxing Multinational Corporations: Effective Tax Rates
  • Yaron Lahav (Ben Gurion) & Reuven Avi-Yonah (Michigan), Effective Tax Rate Comparison Between U.S, and Non- U.S, MNEs: Evidence form the Largest 150 Corporations
  • Douglas Shackelford (North Carolina) & Kevin Markle (Dartmouth), The Determinants of Cross-Country Variation in Effective Tax Rates
  • Eric Allen (UC-Berkely) & Susan Morse (UC-Hastings)

Panel #4: Implications for Policy

  • Reuven Avi-Yonah (Michigan) (moderator)
  • Rosanne Altshuler (Rutgers)
  • John Buckley (Georgetown)
  • Hank Gutman (KPMG)
  • Ed Kleinbard (USC)
  • Steve Shay (Harvard)
  • Martin Sullivan (Tax Analysts)
  • Bret Wells (Houston)
Lunch Speaker:  Michael Durst (former Director, APA program, IRS)

Conferences, Tax | Permalink

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