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Tax-to-GDP ratio: almost 1 to 2 across the EU Member States

Jan 15, 2016 | News

(15 January 2016) – The overall tax-to-GDP ratio, meaning the sum of taxes and net social contributions as a percentage of GDP, stood at 40.0% in the European Union in 2014, compared with 39.9% in 2013.

The tax-to-GDP ratio varies significantly between Member States, with the highest share of taxes and social contributions in percentage of GDP in 2014 being recorded in Denmark (50.8%), followed by Belgium and France (both 47.9%), Finland (44.0%), Austria (43.8%), Italy and Sweden (both 43.7%). At the opposite end of the scale, Romania (27.7%), Bulgaria (27.8%), Lithuania (28.0%) and Latvia (29.2%) registered the lowest ratios.

For income and wealth related taxes, the highest share by far was registered in Denmark (33.4% of GDP), ahead of Sweden (17.9%), Belgium (16.8%) and Finland (16.5%). In contrast, Lithuania (5.1%) and Bulgaria (5.3%) recorded the lowest taxes on income and wealth as a percentage of GDP.

Net social contributions accounted for a significant proportion of GDP in France (19.2%), Belgium (16.9%) and Germany (16.5%), while the lowest shares were observed in Denmark (1.1% of GDP), Sweden (3.7%) and Ireland (5.8%).

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