Netherlands losing economic attractiveness

10th November 2011, Comments 0 comments

The fiscal competitiveness of the Netherlands has worsened over the last year. According to the global Paying Taxes rankings released Thursday, the Netherlands has dropped seven spots to 34th on a list of 183 countries.

The survey, conducted by Pricewaterhouse Coopers PwC and the World Bank, looked at the extent to which entrepreneurs pay taxes in each country. They specifically examined the number of taxes countries levy, the total hours entrepreneurs spend on accounting and the amount of taxes paid.

“The Netherlands has made progress, but neighbouring countries are improving their tax at a higher rate,” says PwC Chairman of Tax Practices Systo Boonstra in a company press release. According to him, European countries including Finland, Spain and Austria have taken bigger steps to reform their tax system than the Netherlands. 

Call for reform Boonstra recommends the Netherlands simplify its tax plan for 2012, particularly with regard to VAT rules, wage tax and social premiums. He also suggests revaluating municipal and water taxes.

“Despite good intentions, it seems our tax plan for 2012 is too complex on a number of fundamental issues. Here, the government should sail a different course if we want to maintain a profile of an open, international economy and attractive business location.”

© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

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