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Written by:
Bas Hollenberg


NL taxes less than EU

Dutch taxes just below EU average
The Dutch lose marginally less of their income to taxes and compulsory contributions than other Europeans. Taxes and social contributions in 2011 accounted for 38 percent of the total economy whereas the average in the European Union is 39 percent, as reported by the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) on Wednesday.
What was noteworthy according to the CBS is that the major differences between the European countries have not lessened since 1995. Many countries that had low taxes and social contributions in 1995 have reduced these even further.
There has been criticism of major tax differences in recent times. Last month the financial details of more than 120 thousand worldwide trust companies using tax havens were leaked. Diederik Samsom, leader of the coalition party PvdA suggested that the Netherlands should put an end to favourable tax arrangements for international companies.
Denmark has the highest tax burden in the EU of 48 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) followed by Sweden with 46 percent. Southern neighbour Belgium has the highest tax burden in the Eurozone with 44 percent. 
The lowest tax rates are found in Eastern Europe. In Lithuania and Bulgaria tax stands at 26 and 27 percent of GDP respectively. Both countries had a tax rate of 27.5 and 30.9 percent respectively in 1995. Latvia makes it into the top three countries with the lowest tax rate with 28 percent of GDP.

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