Britain's tax take at 30-year high The UK’s tax burden is at a 30-year high as a share of GDP, according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. Taxes amounted to one-third of GDP last year, the highest since 1988 and above average for the past 50 years, compared to the 34.2% average across the OECD’s 35-nation club of wealthy countries. Income taxes made up around £186bn of revenues for the Exchequer, around 9.1% of GDP. VAT brought in £139bn, while property taxes contributed £85bn. The Telegraph’s Tim Wallace talks to Julian Jessop, chief economist at the Institute of Economic Affairs, about how tax increases do more harm than good because they harm a country's competitiveness.