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Maltese Tax Burden Lower Than EU Average Says NSO

by Robert Lee, Tax-News.com, London

15 December 2003


A significantly higher proportion of Malta’s tax revenues are derived from indirect taxes than the average recorded for the fifteen current member states of the European Union, according to statistics released by the country’s National Statistics Office last week. However, the jurisdiction’s overall tax burden remains lower than the EU average.

The figures show than in 2001 indirect taxes accounted for just below 44% of Malta’s total tax take compared to an average of 33.7% for the EU. However, in terms of tax revenues as a percentage of Gross Domestic Product, the overall tax burden in Malta is lower than the EU, with taxes taking up 32.6% of GDP compared to the EU average of 41.1%.

The Maltese also pay less in terms of social security contributions when expressed as a percentage of the tax take. In Europe, welfare contributions averaged 31.4% of tax revenues across the fifteen member states whereas in Malta, the proportion was 22.4%.

According to the NSO’s analysis, the percentages of the tax take made up from indirect tax, direct tax and social security contributions have remained more or less constant since 1990, with only marginal growth in corporate tax as a share of total revenues from 10% to 13%.


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