Abstract

The current international corporate tax regime for taxing the business proceeds of firms operates arbitrarily. The aggregates of the nation states’ international corporate tax systems seem to distort a global efficient allocation of resources. The current model of corporate taxation finds its origins in the 1920s. It well suited the economic realities of the early days of international trade and commerce; the times when international business primarily revolved around bulk trade and bricks-and-mortar industries. But those days are long gone. Globalization, European integration, the rise of multinational enterprises, e-commerce, and intangible assets have changed the world considerably. These developments have caused the model to operate inconsistently with the economic reality of today. Corporate taxation and economic reality are no longer aligned. The model is ill-suited to current market realities. As a result multinational business decisions are distorted by tax considerations. The arbitrage may work to the benefit or detriment of nationally and internationally active firms. It also seems to put pressure on nation state corporate tax revenue levels. This may lead to spill-over effects and welfare losses at the end of the day. Matters seem to worsen in today’s increasingly globalizing economy. The question arises as to whether a proper alternative for taxing multinationals can be modeled. How should business proceeds of multinationals be taxed? Can we create something that suits the nature of a global marketplace somewhat better? What would such an alternative tax system look like? How would it operate? This study seeks to set forth an alternative to the corporate taxation framework currently found in international taxation. The aim is to develop some building blocks for an optimal approach towards taxing the business proceeds of multinationals, i.e., a ‘corporate tax 2.0’. As a starting point the authority of currently applicable national, international, and European tax law are not necessarily accepted. Accordingly, applicable tax law serves illustrative rather than argumentative purposes in this research. The study discovers the following components for a ‘Corporate Tax 2.0’: Tax Payable by ‘Firm A’ in Country X = Tax Rate * ‘Firm A’s’ Worldwide Rents * (Domestic Sales / Worldwide Sales).

Additional Metadata
Keywords global market, corporate taxation
Promotor A.J.A. Stevens (Ton)
Publisher Erasmus University Rotterdam
Persistent URL hdl.handle.net/1765/77496
Citation
de Wilde, M.F. (2015, January 15). ‘Sharing the Pie’: Taxing multinationals in a global market. Erasmus University Rotterdam. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1765/77496