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    Robustly trimming tax schemes

    The Netherlands Court of Auditors has investigated the tax schemes in our country. The conclusion was that the objectives are vague, the substantiations poor and the outcome unclear. Moreover, they are rarely evaluated. Therefore, the Court recommends: trim those schemes, amend them or else abolish them. At present, our tax system has more than 116 tax benefit schemes, which cost € 111 billion in tax receipts in 2020. The revenues were € 194 billion.


    The Court of Auditors thinks this is disproportionate. The more so, as a large part of the tax deductions, refunds, credits and exemptions are not efficient. Trimming the number of schemes would make quite a difference. So amend or abolish is the accompanying recommendation. The immediate reason for this recommendation was the Court of Auditors study of four tax schemes. The Court looked into the small projects investment credit (KIA), the deduction for annuity premiums, the exemption for income from agricultural activities and the allowable deduction of specific medical expenses. None of these schemes fulfilled the assessment framework of the Ministry of Finance for the introduction of new schemes and the evaluation of existing schemes.

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