Tax Principles and Tax Harmonization Under Imperfect Competition: A Cautionary Example

14 Pages Posted: 14 Aug 2001

See all articles by Michael Keen

Michael Keen

International Monetary Fund (IMF) - Fiscal Affairs Department; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute); Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS)

Sajal Lahiri

Southern Illinois University Carbondale - Department of Economics

Pascalis Raimondos

Queensland University of Technology - School of Economics and Finance; Copenhagen Business School - Department of Economics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Date Written: July 2001

Abstract

This paper shows that under imperfect competition the welfare effects of indirect tax harmonization may depend crucially on whether taxes are levied by the destination or the origin principle. In a standard model of imperfect competition, while harmonization always makes at least one country better off, and may be Pareto-improving, when taxes are levied under the destination principle (which currently applies in the European Union), harmonization of origin-based taxes (as recently proposed by the European Commission) is certain to be Pareto-worsening when the preferences in the two countries are identical, and is likely to be so even when they differ.

Keywords: Harmonization, Destination Principle, Origin Principle, Commodity Taxation

JEL Classification: H1

Suggested Citation

Keen, Michael and Lahiri, Sajal and Raimondos, Pascalis, Tax Principles and Tax Harmonization Under Imperfect Competition: A Cautionary Example (July 2001). CESifo Working Paper Series No. 518. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=277364

Michael Keen

International Monetary Fund (IMF) - Fiscal Affairs Department ( email )

700 19th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20431
United States

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.CESifo.de

Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS)

7 Ridgmount Street
London, WC1E 7AE
United Kingdom

Sajal Lahiri

Southern Illinois University Carbondale - Department of Economics ( email )

MC 415
1000 Faner Drive
Carbondale, IL 62901
United States

Pascalis Raimondos (Contact Author)

Queensland University of Technology - School of Economics and Finance ( email )

GPO Box 2434
2 George Street
Brisbane, Queensland 4001
Australia

Copenhagen Business School - Department of Economics ( email )

Solbjergs Plads 3
DK-2000 Frederiksberg C
Denmark
+45 38 152 594 (Phone)

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.CESifo.de

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