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Why Danes love taxes
…and a few reasons the UAE should consider them, too. But would you be prepared to surrender your income if it meant a shorter working week? More maternity leave? Free education?
October 20, 2010 4:14 by kippreport
According to a survey conducted by The Greens Analyseinstitut and published in the financial daily Boersen, the majority of Danes are pleased with their tax system, which is known for having the highest tax rates in the world.
66 percent of those surveyed agreed with the system, a surprising twelve percent said the taxes in Denmark were too low, and only 20 percent said the taxes are too high. With income tax often as high as roughly 60 percent; the Danish tax system contributes to 48.3 percent of the country’s GDP.
And, while the taxation may seem severe, the government’s generous system of welfare, unemployment, government supported education, and free health care seems to make the financial compromise worth it. In fact, a recent survey published by the BBC suggested that Danes are the happiest people in the world.
And why wouldn’t they be? With a 37-hour week, Danish parents don’t feel like they have to choose between work and family life. With subsidized childcare (parent’s having to pay no more than 25 percent), Danish parents get 52 weeks of maternity/paternity leave to be shared between them. Much of the leave is completely paid for or 90 percent paid for, with the parents being able to avail of the time off within the first nine years of the child’s life.
All these happy people and perks have us thinking about the Emirates. While having a no-tax policy is something that the UAE proudly boasts of (and one of the main reasons expats flock to this place), Kipp wonders if any of you would be open to the idea?
Though everyone prefers to view their stint in the UAE as temporary, Kipp knows for the majority of expats this isn’t the case: just moving to the UAE to earn some cash more often than not turns into getting married, raising your children and, for some, your grandchildren in the Gulf. So, seeing as you are most likely not going anywhere, Kipp wants to know if you think coughing up the extra Dirhams would be justified if it ensured you better healthcare, free education for your children, unemployment benefits and a shorter working week? And if so, how much would you be willing to pay?