Office for National Statistics: Social Protection, European Comparisons of Expenditure

The UK was ranked ninth out of 28 countries for the size of its social protection expenditure in 2015.

This is according to ONS data published in June 2018 on social protection in the UK and how it compares with selected European countries in 2015.

Social protection is defined as unemployment benefit, old age pension and children’s allowance and hospital stays or free school meals.

The article’s main points include:

  • In 2015, the UK was ninth out of 28 countries, when ranked in terms of the size of its social protection expenditure as a proportion of its gross domestic product (GDP).
  • The UK’s social protection expenditure was worth 28.4% of GDP in 2015; for the same year, France spent the most on social protection, worth a sum equivalent to 32.0% of its GDP.
  • Compared with France, Germany, Spain, Italy and Norway, in 2015 the UK spent the highest proportion of its social protection expenditure on housing.
  • Compared with France, Germany, Spain, Italy and Norway, in 2015, the UK spent the lowest proportion on unemployment.

Find out more here.

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