Beer Taxes in Europe

July 1, 2020

According to EU law, every EU country is required to levy an excise duty on beer of at least €1.87 per 100 liters (26.4 gal) and degree of alcohol content, translating to approximately €0.03 per 330ml (11.2 oz) beer bottle at 5% abv. As today’s map shows, only a few EU countries stick to the minimum rate; most have decided to levy much higher excise duties.

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As is the case with wine taxes, Finland, Ireland, and the United Kingdom are the three EU countries levying the highest excise duties on beer. You’ll find the highest beer tax in Finland, at €0.60 per 330ml beer bottle. Ireland and the United Kingdom are second and third, at €0.37 and €0.35, respectively.

Bulgaria, Germany, Luxembourg, Romania, and Spain are the countries levying the EU’s minimum rate of €0.03 per beer bottle.

All European countries also levy a value-added tax (VAT) on beer. The excise amounts shown in the map above relate only to excise taxes and do not include the VAT, which is charged on the sales value of a beer bottle.

Excise Duties on Beer in European Union (EU) Member States, as of January 2020
EU Member State Excise Duty per 330ml (11.2 oz) Beer Bottle at 5% abv
Euros US-Dollars

Austria (AT)

€0.08 $0.09

Belgium (BE)

€0.08 $0.09

Bulgaria (BG)

€0.03 $0.04

Croatia (HR)

€0.09 $0.10

Cyprus (CY)

€0.10 $0.11

Czech Republic (CZ)

€0.05 $0.06

Denmark (DK)

€0.11 $0.12

Estonia (EE)

€0.21 $0.23

Finland (FI)

€0.60 $0.67

France (FR)

€0.13 $0.14

Germany (DE)

€0.03 $0.04

Greece (GR)

€0.21 $0.23

Hungary (HU)

€0.08 $0.09

Ireland (IE)

€0.37 $0.42

Italy (IT)

€0.12 $0.14

Latvia (LV)

€0.12 $0.14

Lithuania (LT)

€0.12 $0.13

Luxembourg (LU)

€0.03 $0.04

Malta (MT)

€0.08 $0.09

Netherlands (NL)

€0.13 $0.14

Poland (PL)

€0.08 $0.09

Portugal (PT)

€0.07 $0.08

Romania (RO)

€0.03 $0.03

Slovakia (SK)

€0.06 $0.07

Slovenia (SI)

€0.20 $0.22

Spain (ES)

€0.03 $0.04

Sweden (SE)

€0.31 $0.35

United Kingdom (GB)

€0.35 $0.40

Source: European Commission, “Excise Duty Tables: Part I – Alcoholic Beverages,” Jan. 1, 2020,

Note: Some countries levy reduced excise duties for independent small breweries.

Note: This is part of a map series in which we examine excise taxes in Europe.

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A tax is a mandatory payment or charge collected by local, state, and national governments from individuals or businesses to cover the costs of general government services, goods, and activities.

A Value-Added Tax (VAT) is a consumption tax assessed on the value added in each production stage of a good or service. Every business along the value chain receives a tax credit for the VAT already paid. The end consumer does not, making it a tax on final consumption.

An excise tax is a tax imposed on a specific good or activity. Excise taxes are commonly levied on cigarettes, alcoholic beverages, soda, gasoline, insurance premiums, amusement activities, and betting, and typically make up a relatively small and volatile portion of state and local and, to a lesser extent, federal tax collections.