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Global Fossil Fuel Subsidies Remain Large: An Update Based on Country-Level Estimates

David Coady, Ian Parry (), Nghia-Piotr Le and Baoping Shang

No 2019/089, IMF Working Papers from International Monetary Fund

Abstract: This paper updates estimates of fossil fuel subsidies, defined as fuel consumption times the gap between existing and efficient prices (i.e., prices warranted by supply costs, environmental costs, and revenue considerations), for 191 countries. Globally, subsidies remained large at $4.7 trillion (6.3 percent of global GDP) in 2015 and are projected at $5.2 trillion (6.5 percent of GDP) in 2017. The largest subsidizers in 2015 were China ($1.4 trillion), United States ($649 billion), Russia ($551 billion), European Union ($289 billion), and India ($209 billion). About three quarters of global subsidies are due to domestic factors—energy pricing reform thus remains largely in countries’ own national interest—while coal and petroleum together account for 85 percent of global subsidies. Efficient fossil fuel pricing in 2015 would have lowered global carbon emissions by 28 percent and fossil fuel air pollution deaths by 46 percent, and increased government revenue by 3.8 percent of GDP.

Keywords: Gasoline prices; Consumer subsidies; Sustainable development; Energy prices; Fossil fuels; energy subsidies,efficient taxation,revenue,environment,deadweight loss,post-tax,supply cost,global GDP,efficient price,energy subsidy (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 39
Date: 2019-05-02
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cis, nep-ene and nep-env
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