The 27 EU Member States spent €301 billion altogether on family benefits in 2017 (2.3% of EU GDP). This represented 8.6% of the total spent on social protection benefits, according to data released by Eurostat, the statistical service of the EU, on the occasion of the Global Day of Parents and International Children`s Day, celebrated every year on 1 June.
The share of social protection expenditure on family benefits varied significantly between EU Member States. It accounted for more than 15% of total social benefits only in Luxembourg (15.3%), followed by Poland (13.4%) and Estonia (13.1%). The lowest shares were registered in the Netherlands (4.2%) and Portugal (4.9%).
In Cyprus this rate is 6.69% of the total social protection budget (€242.77 million, or €282.45 per inhabitant) and in Greece 5.66% of the total social protection budget (€2.54bn and €236.09 per inhabitant).
Cyprus and Greece rank 7th and 5th lowest in terms of comparative expenditure and 11th and 9th in relative expenditure per inhabitant.
The annual family benefits expenditure per inhabitant was also highest in Luxembourg (€3,100 per inhabitant), followed by Denmark (€1,700), Sweden (€1,400), Germany (€1,300) and Finland (€1,200). Please note that the value is overestimated for Luxembourg compared with other countries, as a significant proportion of benefits are paid to persons living outside the country. In 2017, three countries had family benefits expenditure below €200 per inhabitant: Romania (€100), Bulgaria (€130) and Lithuania (€180).
CNA - Athanasios Athanasiou