European Union on BEPS and Patent Boxes

Par Robert Robillard - 6 juillet 2015

This blogpost originally appeared on rbrt.ca.

The subtitle could easily have read « BEPS: Shoot Me in the Foot Again, Please ».

The authors of the study are Annette Alstadsæter, University of Oslo; Salvador Barrios, European Commission/Joint Research Centre/IPTS; Gaetan Nicodeme, European Commission/ULB/CESifo/CEPR;  Agnieszka Maria Skonieczna, European Commission; and Antonio Vezzani, European Commission/ Joint Research Centre/IPTS).

The abstract of the study tells us:

« Patent boxes have been heavily debated for their role in corporate tax competition. This paper uses firm-level data for the period 2000-2011 for the top 2,000 corporate R&D investors worldwide to consider the determinants of patent registration across a large sample of countries. Importantly, we disentangle the effects of corporate income taxation from the tax advantage of patent boxes. We also exploit a new and original dataset on patent box features such as the conditionality on performing research in the country and their scope. We find that patent boxes have a strong effect on attracting patents mostly due to their favourable tax treatment, especially so for high quality patents. Patent boxes with a large scope in terms of tax base definition have also stronger effects on the location of patents. The size of the tax advantage offered through patent box regimes are found to deter local innovative activities while R&D development conditions tend to attenuate this adverse effect. Our simulations show that on average countries imposing such development conditions tend to grant a tax advantage which is slightly larger than optimal from a local R&D impact perspective. »

The complete paper is available here.

Robert Robillard, Ph.D., CPA, CGA, Adm.A., MBA, M.Sc. Econ., M.A.P.
Senior Partner, RBRT Inc.
514-742-8086; robertrobillard « at » rbrt.ca
www.rbrt.ca

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