Parliament rejects capital gains tax

Voters will have the final say on whether capital gains should be taxed

The Swiss parliament has come out against proposals to introduce a capital gains tax. Opponents successfully argued that such a levy would put Switzerland at a disadvantage over other countries.

This content was published on June 8, 2001 minutes

The Senate on Friday followed the House of Representatives and the government in voting down a proposal to impose a levy of up to 25 per cent on sale of shares and bonds.

Opponents of the tax said the administrative work involved was disproportionate compared to the projected extra revenue of SFr300 million ($167 million) per year.

They also said Switzerland would be the only country in the world to tax both wealth and a capital gains, if it went ahead with the proposal.

Centre-left supporters of the proposed new levy argued it was a question of ethical and moral values. They pointed out it was unfair that some rich taxpayers have been spared from paying their dues.

Trade unions, which are supporting the levy, launched a people's initiative in 1999. They say the new tax could result in extra revenue of up to SFr1 billion ($569 million).

The House of Representatives rejected the proposal during the spring session. But the electorate will have the final word on the issue in a nationwide vote.

swissinfo with agencies

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