, Volume 11, Issue 1, pp 91-115

Company Tax Reform in the European Union

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Abstract

The European Commission recently proposed to move towards a consolidated tax base for European multinational companies, to be allocated across EU member states through a system of formula apportionment. This paper argues that while the Commission's blueprints for company tax reform may reduce existing problems of transfer pricing, they will also create new distortions as long as existing tax rate differentials are maintained. The paper also investigates the changes in international tax spillovers which will occur as a result of a switch from the current system of separate accounting to formula apportionment. The final part of the paper discusses whether more conventional corporate tax harmonization should still be a long term policy goal for the EU and presents quantitative estimates of the efficiency gains from harmonization.