Workers in the Netherlands pay the highest social contributions among OECD countries, with 29.1% of the salary of a single worker and 26% of that of a couple with two children and one wage-earner in the family.
The same worker in Iceland would lose just 0.2% of his wages in contributions, regardless of whether he or she was single or married and regardless of the number of children. But a single worker in Iceland would lose 24% of his wages in income tax, compared with 6.3% in the Netherlands.
Estimates for 2000 show that for single persons with average earnings the average change in the burden between 1999 and 2000 was rarely more than 1 percentage point, according to Taxing Wages, 1999/2000, 2000 Edition. The exceptions were Australia, where it fell by 1.5 percentage points, and Turkey, where it rose by 6.4 points.
©OECD Observer No 226/227, Summer 2001