Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Rent Seeking, Tax Policy, and Economic Growth

Polterovich, Victor (2001): Rent Seeking, Tax Policy, and Economic Growth.

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Abstract

It is suggested a Romer-Barro - type model of endogenous economic growth where producers contest for distribution of a fixed share of the government’s tax revenue. The proportional contest mechanism is assumed. We studied conditions under which consumers gain or lose due to existence of the Rent seeking, tax policy, and economic growth (RS) opportunities. It is found that RS always decreases rate of growth but nevertheless may raise consumer’s overall utility. RS is advantageous if tax rate is too high or rate of production return is too low. The area of parameters, where RS has positive effect, is larger for more impatient consumers.

We study also a static RS production model with heterogeneous producers and show that excessive tax burden creates incentives for RS (which is interpreted as corruption). It is argued that the producers’ support of corruption-free regimes depends on the marginal cost elasticity of the production technologies and may be reached due to technical progress.

The results demonstrate that the connection, observed in a number of empirical papers, between economic development and RS may be two - way since it may be caused by factors that influence both RS and economic growth.

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