Bank announces party funding policy

Credit Suisse says it is setting aside a maximum SFr1 million ($1.1 million) annually for the funding of Switzerland’s main political parties.

This content was published on March 23, 2012 minutes and agencies

The bank said the financing was dependent on the strength of a party on cantonal and federal levels but did not entail a specific political commitment.

Credit Suisse, which published the announcement in a report on corporate responsibility, said it considered the funding as part of its support for the role of political parties in the Swiss militia system.

The other main bank, UBS, said it was examining its funding policy but has given no further details.

The Raiffeisen bank recently announced it was paying a maximum of SFr246,000 annually.

Switzerland has come under increasing pressure from the Council of Europe for its opaque policy on party funding. Switzerland is one of the few countries without any laws on the issue.

It is believed that more than a third of the top 20 Swiss companies make direct financial contributions to parties.

The justice ministry is due to report on the issue by next month.

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