CEI's Berlau: US Tax Code Deters Economic Growth

Monday, 05 May 2014 04:05 PM

By Courtney Coren

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The tax code combined with regulations are deterrents to wealthy business owners moving to and taking up residence in the United States, says John Berlau, senior fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute.

"We have trillions of dollars in regulatory costs, like they are hidden taxes," Berlau told J.D. Hayworth and Francesca Paige on "America's Forum" on Newsmax TV. "You're creating a disincentive for the most productive people coming here and for people creating here."

The United States had the highest corporate tax rate of the industrialized world in 2012 at a 39.13 percent tax rate, and Berlau explained that the U.S. government is also "one of the few countries in the world that has . . . as high a corporate tax on foreign earnings what our companies earn in Europe and Asia."

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In other words, "the U.S. taxes [corporations], plus it gets taxed by those countries."

"So it actually creates a perverse incentive to keep those profits and reinvest overseas, rather than bring it back here," he added.

Berlau argues that changing this one thing would help to spur economic growth.

"I think changing the U.S. system to . . . where worldwide . . . what is earned here is taxed and what a company earns in foreign countries is only taxed by those countries would both simplify and create economic growth," he explained.

"You wouldn't have to create . . . tax credits to offset the [value added tax], and all the taxes in Europe because the U.S just wouldn't be taxing those earnings at all."

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