EU Taxes for the EU Budget in the Light of Sustainability Orientation – a Survey

Margit Schratzenstaller, Alexander Krenek, Danuše Nerudová and Marian Dobranschi

Abstract

EU taxes play a key role in political and economic discussions about the future of the EU own resource system, and their desirability can vary accordingly. It is therefore essential to clearly articulate the goals which are to be achieved by the introduction of this new financing tool. This paper provides a critical review of pros and cons of EU taxes put forward in the literature. Reviewing the conventional fiscal federalism and political economy literature on this topic it can be concluded that there is no convincing (overall) case for funding the EU budget with EU taxes rather than with contributions by Member States which currently make up for the lion’s share of EU own resources. There are, however, some specific issues arising from a sustainability perspective, which could be addressed with the introduction of EU taxes. Departing from a comprehensive concept of sustainability which is based on the economic, the social, the environmental and the cultural/institutional pillar of sustainability, the paper identifies existing sustainability gaps in taxation in the EU. EU taxes if designed accordingly may be suitable instruments to reduce these sustainability gaps and thus to strengthen sustainability-orientation of taxation in the EU.

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The Journal of Economics and Statistics is a scientific journal published in Germany since 1863. The Journal publishes papers in all fields of economics and applied statistics. A specific focus is on papers combining theory with empirical analyses.

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