OECD: Greek households among the most heavily taxed amongst its members

21 March 2018
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Recession-battered Greece imposes Scandinavian-like tax rates while offering social benefits, such as health and education, on par with its Balkan neighbors, according to a report by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and Eurostat data.

The country is also plagued with the third highest tax rate in the European Union for medium- and high-income brackets, a trend only exacerbated over the last few years with a “tax tsunami” imposed in 2016 by the leftist-rightist coalition government, as part of its efforts to meet memorandum-mandated fiscal targets.

Conversely, the report notes that OECD member-states and Eurozone members are continuously moving towards lower tax rates, both in terms of personal income taxes and corporate tax rates.

The figures were presented in the OECD’s “Going for Growth” report, released on Tuesday.

The highest rate slapped on individual taxpayers in Greece, for 2017, reaches 55 percent, slightly behind Sweden’s 57.1 percent, a surprising Portugal (56.2 percent) and non-EZ member Denmark (55.8 percent).

For instance, a household with four members in Greece, two of which are minors, and with an average income of between 850 to 900 euros a month, the tax rate reaches a painful 38.2 percent, compared with an OECD average of 30 percent.

The OECD reports also points to a low monthly unemployment benefit paid out to the registered jobless in Greece and a now decades-old scourge of very low education standards, compared to other western countries and EU members.

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