A missing link in the analysis of global value chains: cross-border flows of intangible assets, taxation and related measurement implications

Economic Research Working Paper No. 37

Author(s): Thomas S. Neubig, Sacha Wunsch-Vincent | Publication year: 2017

Understanding cross-border flows of disembodied knowledge, often associated with intellectual property (IP), is essential to analyzing how modern economies operate. This paper documents how available data to document these IP flows are distorted by various factors, including tax planning by multinational enterprises. It finds that tax-induced mismeasurement could be more than 35%, and greater for individual countries particularly high-tax-rate countries.

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