High pay, low tax: where is best to work in the OECD?

- Finance - Apr 21, 2017

Luxembourg and Switzerland are among the most lucrative countries to work in, according to research into wages and taxation.

On the back of the recent release of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Taxing Wages 2017 report, ExpatFinder.com analysed additional OECD data to find what this all means for expats planning on a global move 2017. Along with taxable income, another key factor motivating an expat’s move should be the individual’s wages to hours worked ratio for maximised income and overall life satisfaction.

Sebastien Deschamps, CEO of ExpatFinder.com, said: “Our data analysis shows that Luxembourg, Switzerland and Norway rank the highest among OECD countries when it comes to an average worker's hourly wage compared to the number of hours he puts into work. However, for married expats relocating to these countries with their children, OECD's recent report on taxes on labour income brings additional good news. The average tax rate for married employees with two children in Luxembourg and Switzerland rank significantly lower than the OECD average in 2016, thanks to generous family benefits. So, it is not surprising to see globally mobile talents with families making these markets their destination of choice in Europe."

The research found that of the OECD countries, Luxembourg, Switzerland and Norway came out on top, with average hourly wages over 2015 of US$40.06, US$36.73 and US$35.75, respectively, when adjusted for purchasing parity power (see below).

Stephane Compain, CEO LuxRelo, commented: “Despite the high cost of living and the recent turbulence around the Brexit decision, families are still being attracted to Luxembourg for work, due to some of the highest average wages in the world and its prime position at the centre of Europe. Yesterday’s Taxing Wages 2017 report from the OECD showed very little change across the board compared to last year, exemplifying how stable the country is, both politically and economically, in such turbulent times.”

The Taxing Wages Report 2017 has provided a new insight into this data, as seen below, confirming that all three of these European countries, but especially Luxembourg and Switzerland, are some of the best places to move in the world as an expat family seeking out increased wages and a better quality of life. Both of these countries have been popular with foreign workers for some time, with 24.3 percent of Switzerland’s registered residents being foreign in 2014.

Read the April 2017 issue of Business Review Europe magazine. 

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