The board of directors and the corporate tax planning: Empirical Evidence from Tunisia

Aliani Khaoula, Zarai Mohamed Ali


Our study represents the first attempt to investigate whether board of directors’ attributes have an impact on corporate tax planning in a developing country.

Using a sample of 32 companies listed on the Tunisian stock exchange market from 2000 to 2007, results indicate that duality and diversity on the board of directors significantly influences tax planning. Duality exhibits a negative relation with effective tax rates. However, diversity on the board shows a positive association. We don’t find relations between board size, independent directors and corporate tax planning.

We contribute to the large literature on corporate tax planning by proposing that board’s characteristics may have a substantial effect on reducing effective tax rates. We add a new angle to existing studies on corporate tax governance by involving board’s diversity and sectorial effect. An implication of this study is that tax planning would be decreased by women’s presence on the board of directors. In addition, tax incentives granted by the state to some sectors may improve tax strategies.

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