Yellen: Ne, kdo bo imel nižje davke od Bermudov ali Švice, pač pa tekmujmo na podlagi kvalitete zaposlenih in infrastrukture

Ameriška finančna ministrica Janet Yellen je v današnji kolumni v Wall Street Journalu predstavila obrise reforme ameriškega sistema obdavčitve dobičkov korporacij. Lucidno je konkurenco med državami v zniževanju davka od dobička označila kot “dirko proti dnu”, pri kateri države tudi priletijo kot kamen na dno. Žrtev te davčne dirke so namreč domači proračuni, s tem pa kvaliteta javne transportne in  digitalne infrastrukture.

Davčna reforma Yellenove odpravlja spodbude iz Trumpovega davčnega zakona, ki so omogočale preusmerjanje dobička v davčne oaze oziroma države z najnižjimi stopnjami. Trumpov zakon je namreč podjetjem dajal zelo lahko izbiro: podjetje lahko poslovanje in dobičke iz tujine preseli v ZDA, kjer je stopnja davka od dobička 21% , ali jih shrani kjer koli drugje po svetu, kjer pa bo obdavčitev v ZDA le polovična. Odločitev je bila enostavna, ker se najnižji davek izračuna na podlagi celotnega globalnega dobička podjetja, ne pa na podlagi tega, koliko podjetje zasluži v posamezni državi. In ker nihče ne spremlja davčnih režimov v posamezneih državah, so lahko korporacije preusmerile in knjižile dobiček v države z najnižjimi stopnjami. Trumpov zakon je tudi omogočil, da je prvih 10% dobička na v tujini investirana sredstva oproščen davka, kar je bila seveda dodatna stimulacija korporacijam k offshoringu proizvodnje in delovnih mest.

Davčna reforma Yellenove odpravlja to olajšavo na v tujini investirana sredstva in vzpostavlja minimalno davčno stopnjo od dobička, pri čemer se davčna osnova preneha izračunavati na podlagi skupnega svetovnega dobička. Namesto tega se davčna osnova določi za dobičke, ustvarjene po posameznih državah, s čimer korporacije ne morejo preusmerjati in prikazovati dobičkov v državah z najnižjimi stopnjami.

Predvsem pa je pomembno, da Yellenova to davčno reformo veže na investicije v javno transportno in digitalno infrastrukturo, ki se bo financirala iz teh dodatnih fiskalnih prilivov. Pomembno je, da je vzpostavila relacijo med kvaliteto infrastrukture, ki je javno dobro in od katere imajo koristi domače korporacije. Zato morajo k njeni izgradnji in modernizaciji tudi prispevati pošteni delež. Namesto v davkih je treba tekmovanje prenesti na polje kvalitete človeškega kapitala in infrastrukture.

Razum se je vrnil v Belo hišo.

This is the rock bottom of the race to the bottom: By choosing to compete on taxes, we’ve neglected to compete on the skill of our workers and the strength of our infrastructure. It’s a self-defeating competition, and neither President Biden nor I am interested in participating in it anymore.

We want to change the game.

Last week, the president announced a series of proposals that, collectively, do exactly this: They enter the U.S. into a new, smarter form of competition. America will compete on our ability to produce talented workers, cutting-edge research and state-of-the-art infrastructure—not on whether we can have lower tax rates than Bermuda or Switzerland.

The Made in America Tax Plan tilts the scales in favor of companies that invest in the U.S. It eliminates the TCJA’s profit-shifting and offshoring incentives. The proposal ends the special exclusion on foreign assets. It also establishes a more effective global minimum tax that is much closer to the American rate, and stops calculating it based on total global profits. Instead, the tax will be calculated country by country. That way, corporations can’t shift profits around the world to minimize their tax bills.

The tax plan not only ends U.S. participation in the race to the bottom, it also gives the whole world an incentive to give up the race. Destructive tax competition will only end when enough major economies stop undercutting one another and agree to a global minimum tax. Through the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, we have been engaged in productive negotiations to achieve this, and the new tax proposal also includes some powerful incentives for other nations to sign on. For instance, the plan penalizes foreign multinationals operating in America that try to shift profits to tax havens.

The revenue generated by the tax plan will be turned into a once-in-a-generation investment in U.S. competitiveness. The Biden administration’s American Jobs Plan includes funding for both traditional infrastructure (roads, bridges, ports) and the more modern kind needed to run a digital economy (high-speed broadband networks and a clean energy grid). According to Moody’s, by 2024 these investments will add an extra 1.6% to GDP, which equates to roughly $400 billion.

America’s corporate tax system has long been broken. So too has been the way we think about corporate taxation. Tax reform isn’t a zero-sum game, with corporations on one side and government on the other. There are policies that are mutually beneficial, true win-wins. Washington has one in front of it right now. 

Vir: Janet Yellen, Wall Street Journal

%d bloggers like this: