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International Handbook of Land and Property Taxation

Edited by Richard M. Bird, Professor Emeritus, Rotman School of Management and Senior Fellow, Institute on Municipal Finance and Governance, Munk School of Global Affairs, University of Toronto, Canada and Enid Slack, Economic Consultant and Adjunct Professor, University of Toronto, Canada
This comprehensive Handbook explores case studies of land and property taxation in 25 countries (five in each of five regions – OECD, central and eastern Europe, Asia, Africa, and Latin America), and focuses on the potential contributions of the property tax to the revenues of urban and rural governments and to more efficient land use.
Extent: 320 pp
Hardback Price: $215.00 Web: $193.50
Publication Date: 2004
ISBN: 978 1 84376 647 6
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  • Economics and Finance
  • Public Finance
  • Public Sector Economics
Taxes on land and property exist all over the world in many forms and are an important source of finance for local governments. The extent to which local governments have control over property taxes is often an important determinant of their ability to make autonomous expenditure decisions. This comprehensive Handbook explores case studies of land and property taxation in 25 countries (five in each of five regions – OECD, central and eastern Europe, Asia, Africa, and Latin America), and focuses on the potential contributions of the property tax to the revenues of urban and rural governments and to more efficient land use.

Introductory chapters highlight the diversity in the application of land and property taxes among the countries. Major policy alternatives with respect to taxing land and property are discussed, including the choice of tax base, exemptions, methods of determining the tax base, tax rates, differential treatment of different classes of property (such as farms, residences, commercial properties), and the process of tax administration. Other taxes levied on land, such as land transfer taxes, development charges and unearned increment taxes, are also reviewed, as is recent experience with property tax reform in a number of countries.

This major reference work will provide a valuable resource and necessary addition to the libraries of government officials, municipal associations, property assessors, international agencies, teachers and students of public finance.
‘. . . fine compilation of essays dealing with international land and property taxation issues. . . . the book is well researched and readable in presenting the tax systems. . . The book would be more than appropriate as additional reading for a master’s level class in taxation. It could supplement an international tax class, or be used in a state and local tax class to present contrasts and complexities of the issue in other countries.’
– Malichi van Tassell Tor, The Journal of the American Taxation Association

‘. . . this is quite an achievement. Thanks to the nature of the case studies and the contributing authors the volume is inherently international in its scope and should appeal to practitioners, teachers, and students interested in land and property taxation, international economic development, and land and real-estate studies.’
– Scott Orford, Environment and Planning B: Planning and Design

‘I have found the book International Handbook of Land and Property Taxation a very meaningful and enlightening book to read. The editors Bird and Slack have developed a theoretically sound framework, backed by economic conceptions in order to attempt a comprehensive treatment on tax administration on land and property. Specifically and yet more broadly, they have to their credit managed to throw light of sufficient depth on key issues that include the tax base and rate, the tax burden and the tax policy decision makers. The international dimension is just as imperative to consider and the editors have effectively succeeded to render an in-depth treatment in this regard. This imperative is also a unique and important contribution to empirical real estate studies within the tax discipline, and the editors should be highly commended in this effort. I am very encouraged with the academic rigor of this book publication. . .’
– David Ho, Journal of Property Investment and Finance
Contributors: R.M. Bird, M. Guevara, I. Irarrazaval, R. Kelly, T. Kitazato, G. Naresh, E. Rezk, E. Slack, P.B. Spahn, A. Tassonyi, A. Timofeev, F. Vaillancourt, S. Varanyuwatana, D. Wang, S. Xu
Contents: 1. Introduction and Overview 2. Land and Property Taxation in 25 Countries: A Comparative Review 3. Reforming Property Taxes Part I: OECD Countries 4. Property Taxation in Canada 5. Property Taxation in the United Kingdom 6. Property Taxation in Australia 7. Land Taxation in Germany 8. Property Tax in Japan Part II: Asia 9. Property Taxation in Indonesia 10. Property Taxation in India 11. Real Property Taxation in the Philippines 12. Property Tax in Thailand 13. Land and Property Taxation in China Part III: Africa 14. Property Rates in Kenya 15. Property Rates in Tanzania 16. Property Taxation in South Africa 17. Land and Property Taxation in Guinea 18. Land and Property Taxation in Tunisia Part IV: Central and Eastern Europe 19. Land-based Taxes in Hungary 20. Land and Property Taxes in Russia 21. Property Tax in Ukraine 22. Land and Property Taxes in Poland 23. Real Estate Tax in Latvia Part V: Latin America 24. Land Taxes in Colombia 25. Taxes on Land and Property in Argentina 26. Property Tax in Chile 27. Property Taxes in Mexico 28. Property Taxes in Nicaragua Index