Monday, May 1, 2017
Richard Vann (University of Sydney) presents International Tax Post-BEPS: Is the Corporate Tax Really All That Bad? (with Ray Rees (University of Oslo)) at NYU today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium Series hosted by Daniel Shaviro and Rosanne Altshuler:
The corporate income tax has been getting a particularly bad press from academic economists for over three decades, as one of the most inefficient tax instruments currently used by governments. The criticism of the corporate income tax has been matched by a similar bad press for taxation of capital income generally. More recently these views have come to be accepted both at the national and international levels by government policy makers, who indeed have become strong advocates of such changes.
At the same time as this criticism has become more insistent in several countries based around international distortions produced by the corporate income tax, there has been public outrage against tax avoidance by multinational enterprises to which the response was the launching of the OECD/G20 Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) project designed to shore up the corporate income tax. Perhaps to defend against claims that this is just politics to secure re-election, two of the BEPS 15 Action items have involved policy examination of the corporate income tax and seem to represent a reconsideration of the view that it is particularly inefficient.