SPAIN loses a staggering €90 billion a year because of political corruption, new figures have revealed.
It is the fourth most corrupt country in the EU losing some 8% of its gross domestic profit, a study by Verdes en la Eurocamara shows.
According to the study, the UK loses 2.3% of its GDP on corruption – the second lowest figure in the EU, along with Denmark and Luxembourg, while the Netherlands is officially the least corrupt using 0.76%.
Spain follows Italy (€237 billion), France (more than €120 billion) and Germany (€104 billion), while corruption costs the EU €904 billion annually.
The €90 billion euros Spain has to pay for corruption is four times the budget allocated for unemployed benefits, more than 90% of annual health funds and 88% of pension payouts.
Spain has seen dozens of high case corruption cases since it became a democracy in the 1978.
The ERE scandal in Andalucia saw almost €1 billion stolen by leaders of the Junta.
The decade-long scandal saw politicians from the socialist-run government divert public money from an €855 million fund meant for unemployed and retired workers.
Other scandals like the Gurtel saw dozens of Partido Popular leaders accused of taking more than €450 million in backhanders in return for rewarding construction contracts and other favours.
It was the first time a sitting prime minister was forced to sit in the dock as Mariano Rajoy was questioned over his knowledge of the slush fund.