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American Economic Journal: Applied Economics: Vol. 1 No. 2 (April 2009)

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Income Inequality and Progressive Income Taxation in China and India, 1986-2015

Article Citation

Piketty, Thomas, and Nancy Qian. 2009. "Income Inequality and Progressive Income Taxation in China and India, 1986-2015." American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, 1(2): 53-63.

DOI: 10.1257/app.1.2.53

Abstract

This paper evaluates income tax reforms in China and India. The combination of fast income growth and under-indexed tax schedule in China implies the fraction of the Chinese population subject to income tax has increased from less than 0.1 percent in 1986 to about 20 percent in 2008, while it has stagnated around 2-3 percent in India. Chinese income tax revenues, as a share of GDP, increased from less than 0.1 percent in 1986 to about 1.5 percent in 2005 and 2.5 percent in 2008, while the constant adaptation of exemption levels and income brackets in India have caused them to stagnate around 0.5 percent of GDP. (JEL D31, H24, 015, 023, P23, P35)

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Authors

Piketty, Thomas (Paris School of Economics)
Qian, Nancy (Brown U)

JEL Classifications

D31: Personal Income, Wealth, and Their Distributions
H24: Personal Income and Other Nonbusiness Taxes and Subsidies; includes inheritance and gift taxes
O15: Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
O23: Fiscal and Monetary Policy in Development
P23: Socialist Systems and Transitional Economies: Factor and Product Markets; Industry Studies; Population
P35: Socialist Institutions and Their Transitions: Public Economics

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