An empirical study of the impact of corporate taxation on the global allocation of foreign direct investment : a broad tax attractiveness index approach

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The question of whether a country's corporate tax regime has a significant influence on the level of foreign direct investment (FDI) into that country is an important consideration in the design of national tax policy. This is especially relevant today in view of the recent increase in the global mobility of capital and subsequent increase in the importance of FDI to nations' economies. Although several prior quantitative studies have investigated the link between taxation and FDI, they have tended to be restricted in geographical scope and in their measure of taxation.This study constructs indices of "corporate tax attractiveness" for selected countries and then analyses the relationship between the indices and measures of the flow of FDI into those countries. The indices are constructed by obtaining evaluations from international investors and taxation experts on the various attributes of the tax systems of those selected countries. A significant positive relationship was found to exist between the indices and measures of FDI inflows, and between individual tax system attributes and those inflows, thus adding support to the supposition that host country corporate taxation influences the size of FDI inflows.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)105-120
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of International Accounting, Auditing and Taxation
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2003


  • Corporate taxation
  • FDI inflows

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