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Developments in the Member States

Part II

reduced tax rate has been increased from € 120 202.41 to € 300 000. Companies that have less than 25 employees,
a turnover below € 5 million are taxed on their annual profits below € 300 000 at 20 %, annual profits above this
threshold are taxed at 25 %. Companies that do no longer qualify for the SME special tax regime will nevertheless S
be able to apply the regime for three years following the loss for the SME qualification. Free depreciation is p
granted for all companies up to 2015. Some tax credits, including those for exports, are to be gradually phased out
by 2011, 2012 or 2014. The rules regarding tax credits for reinvestment have also been revised, in particular with
a
reference to the kind of assets involved. Finally, the R&D tax credit, whose projected phase-out will not take place, i
has been expanded to companies with more than 25 % of their research activity in another EU Member State or n
member of the EEA.

VAT and excise duties


The standard VAT rate is 18 %. Two reduced rates of 8 % and 4 % apply to specific categories of goods as a
consequence of the reform which came into force on 1 July 2010. Previously, a special VAT consolidation regime
applicable to corporate groups, and the possibility of claiming immediate VAT refunds had been introduced. Tax
rates for tobacco and hydrocarbons had been slightly increased in June 2009 and once more tobacco tax rates were
raised again in December 2010.

Wealth and transaction taxes


Inheritance and gift taxes are levied on behalf of the 17 autonomous regions, which set their own tax rates within
certain limits. A tax on wealth transfers applies to rights and assets located in Spain. Since 2011, a stamp duty tax
exemption applies in case of company formation, capital raising, partner contributions, and when Head Offices
from countries outside the EU are being moved to Spain. For the transfer of real estate, this tax is levied depending
on the Autonomous Community where the land is located. If no specific rate is set, a 7 % rate is levied on the value
of real estate. In September 2011, Spain restored temporarily the wealth tax for 2011 and 2012, with two main
changes compared to the former version: The value up to which dwelling houses are exempt was doubled up to a
value of € 300 000, and the general tax-free amount increased from around € 108 000 to now € 700 000.

Local taxes
Regional governments received a significant share of total tax revenue (33 % of personal income tax; 35 % of
VAT; 40 % of excise duties on hydrocarbons, tobacco, beer and alcohol; 100 % of excise duties on electricity and
car registration). Indirect tax revenues are transferred according to a territorial consumption index. Statutory
personal income tax rates can be modified by the regional governments provided the structure retains progression
and the number of tax brackets is unchanged. Taxes on inheritance and gift tax, registration duties and fees on
lotteries and gambling are wholly assigned to territorial governments with almost complete jurisdictional powers.

Under the system applied since 2009, about 90 % of all autonomous communities’ resources come from taxes. In
this regard, autonomous communities benefit form an increased share in the ceded taxes (50 % of Personal Income
Tax and VAT and 58 % of Excise Taxes), as well as increased discretionary powers.

As of January 2012 a temporary surcharge (up to 2013) applies in the Real Estate Tax (municipal tax) for
immovable properties with an updated cadastral value over the average value in each municipality.

Social contributions
Each professional category has minimum and maximum contribution bases. Since 2012, the maximum monthly
base is € 3 262.50; the minimum varies depending on the type of work (ranging from 748.20 to 1 045.20 €/month).
The total rate for the general regime (including general risk, unemployment insurance and professional education
training) is 4.7 % of covered earnings for the employees and 23.6 % for employers for a total contribution of
28.3 %. Self-employed persons contribute between 26.5 % and 29.8 % of their earnings, with a minimum payment
of € 250 per month.

Taxation trends in the European Union 155