Land Value Taxation, a Solution for Developing Countries? Using Land Values to Fund Public Services and Foster Social Justice
Land Value Taxation, a Solution for Developing Countries?
Access to land is basic to human life. Land is embedded in all socio-economic activity. To share the fruits of land equally among all citizens is essential to social justice and sustainable development for any (developing) country. As land physically cannot be divided up equally among all market participants, collecting the annual rental value offers a fair and simple solution.
Total land rent, which amounts up to 1/3 of the GDP can then be used to fund further public services and lower other distorting taxes and fees (thus increasing international competitiveness). Any remaining surplus can be shared equally as social dividend. Assessing land values is an open and transparent process, leaving little room for corruption. Making use of computer and GIS technology delivers real-time results that are readily available to anyone in need of such information.
Taxing land values will make land more accessible to those with limited access to credit, as land now would have no net earnings and hence no capital value of its own. Thus, progress would be orderly and its fruits would be equitably shared. The wealth gap would close around a large, well off, middle class society. Millennium Development Goals would be within reach.
Keywords: Land Distribution, Social Justice, Poverty Alleviation, Good Governance, Raising Public Revenues, Sustainable Development, Public Transport, Education
International Consultant, International Land Economics
Prior to moving to Viet Nam he has worked for four years for the City of Philadelphia, assisting the Mayor and City Council on best practices, sustainable development, and urban revitalization. His main task was to develop a tax policy that fosters the retaining of businesses and residents while laying the groundwork for attracting new ones.
Moser's broad based knowledge of public finance and international politics bring an unbiased, rigorous analysis of socio-economic affairs and outcome-oriented solutions to the discussion around poverty alleviation and the reach of the Millennium Development Goals.