The European Journal of Comparative Economics

ISSN: 1824-2979

EJCE Year: 2006, June. Volume: 3 - Issue: 1

A Tax Evasion - Bribery Game: Experimental Evidence from Ukraine

by Volodymyr Bilotkach

Start page: 31 - End page: 49

Keywords: Tax Evasion; Bribery; Experiment; Learning in Games

Jel code: H26; C91; D73; H32

Abstract:

This paper examines the issue of tax evasion by enterprises through underreporting activity. We develop a view of this phenomenon as an equilibrium of the game between a businessman and an imperfectly monitored supervising official, in which a businessman can hide part of his profit and offer bribe to official. We determine conditions under which such tax evasion and bribery become wide-spread in the society, resulting in shadow economy. The game is put into an experimental setting in Kiev, Ukraine, with the emphasis of spreading of the tax evasion and bribery activity in the laboratory setting. We find that once it becomes known that substantial share of subjects playing the role of supervising officials agree to accept bribes from subjects playing the role of businessmen, the latter offer bribes more aggressively. Yet, this in turn does not affect the behavior of subjects playing the role of supervising officials.

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