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International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
This Selected Issues paper examines the reasons behind Lithuania’s low tax-GDP ratio relative to the European Union (EU). At end-2015, Lithuania had nearly the lowest tax-GDP ratio in the EU, along with Bulgaria and Romania. The tax revenue shortfall relative to the EU is for the most part attributable to weak tax administration and tax policy, with the structure of the economy playing a secondary role. The second largest contribution to the tax revenue shortfall relative to the EU comes from social security contributions. The shortfall is driven primarily by the structure of the economy, and to a smaller extent by tax administration.
Mr. Christopher M Towe
The apparent slowdown in U.S. investment and productivity growth in recent years has led to a number of proposals to stimulate investment through the adoption of tax incentives. This paper describes the incentives that were contained in the February 1993 Budget and estimates their effect on the user cost of capital. The recent evidence regarding the effect of tax changes on investment in the United States is reviewed, and the likely effect of the Budget’s proposals on investment and overall economic activity is simulated. The simulations suggest that the proposals would have had a stimulative but largely transitory effect on U.S. investment and output.
Mr. Alexander D Klemm
This paper provides an updated overview of tax incentives for business investment. It begins by noting that tax competition is likely to be a major force driving countries' tax reforms, and discusses tax incentives as a possible response to this. This is complemented by other arguments for and against tax incentives, and by an illustrative analysis of different incentives using effective tax rates. Findings from the empirical literature on tax incentives are also presented. Based on the overview of theoretical and empirical findings, the paper then suggests a matrix of criteria to determine the usefulness of different tax incentives depending on a country's circumstances.
Mr. Nigel A Chalk
The Philippines is faced with a policy dilemma in the area of corporate taxation. On the one hand, the country has, over the past few years, witnessed a decline in revenue as a share of output. On the other, it is operating in an increasingly competitive regional market for foreign direct investment. In order to remain competitive, the Philippines offers a broad array of fiscal incentives to entice inward investment and pursue the country's development goals. This paper looks at the fiscal incentives available in the Philippines, compares them with those available in the ASEAN region, and with the evidence on the efficacy of tax incentives in a global context. The paper provides some broad conclusions on the use of the various forms of tax incentives in the Philippines and on their administration.
Mr. Howell H Zee
This paper proposes a new hybrid cash-flow tax on corporations that, on one hand, taxes only excess corporate profits as they accrue, and, on the other hand, treats real and financial transactions neutrally. It is, therefore, a superior tax compared to the cash-flow tax on real transactions that seems to have gained common acceptance. The hybrid tax is a modified version of the cash-flow tax on real and financial transactions combined. The modification involves replacing expensing of fixed assets with normal depreciation allowances, but the undepreciated value of fixed assets is carried forward with interest at the opportunity cost of equity capital.
Christopher M. Towe

This compilation of summaries of Working Papers released during July-December 1993 is being issued as a part of the Working Paper series. It is designed to provide the reader with an overview of the research work performed by the staff during the period. Authors of Working Papers are normally staff members of the Fund or consultants, although on occasion outside authors may collaborate with a staff member in writing a paper. The views expressed in the Working Papers or their summaries are, however, those of the authors and should not necessarily be interpreted as representing the views of the Fund. Copies of individual Working Papers and information on subscriptions to the annual series of Working Papers may be obtained from IMF Publication Services, International Monetary Fund, 700 19th Street N.W., Washington, D.C. 20431. Telephone: (202) 623-7430 Telefax: (202) 623-7201