UK ‘middle earners’ hit by tax rises

A study by Paris-based, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and
Development, has found that the proportion of the nation’s income taken by the
Government in tax rose by 1.2% to 37.2% in the last year, the biggest increase
in Europe.

The report revealed that Britain’s overall tax burden has overtaken that of
Germany – traditionally perceived as one of Europe’s notorious high-tax nations.

The tax burden in Germany now accounts account for only 34.7% of gross
domestic product, 1.5% less than in Britain.

Middle-class UK families are increasingly being dragged in to paying the top
rate of income tax, stamp duty and inheritance tax, the report found.

From 1997 when Labour came into power to 2006, the number of people paying
the top-rate income tax of 40p in the pound has climbed from two million to 3.3

Shadow chancellor George Osborne said: ‘Not only have taxes gone up faster
than in almost all other OECD countries, but this report shows that Gordon Brown
is taxing all the wrong things.

The Treasury said the increased tax burden was the result of stronger
economic growth, which has lifted government revenues.

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