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Senate votes for partial abolition of stamp duty

The Senate has approved a proposal to partially scrap a tax on financial transactions. The decision is aimed at supporting Swiss bourses and is expected to cost the federal government more than SFr200 million ($120 million) in lost revenue.

The Senate unanimously came out in favour of exempting foreign funds being traded on the Swiss stock exchange, as well as Swiss blue chips floated on foreign stock markets.

However, it stopped short of granting the same privilege to Swiss institutional investors, including social insurance funds.

The finance minister, Kaspar Villiger, told parliament on Wednesday that he welcomed the decision. It's expected to reduce the government's tax income by more than SFr218 million annually.

Another proposal, to be discussed in the House of Representatives next week, also seeks exemption from stamp duty for Swiss institutional investors. This would lead to a drop in revenue of nearly SFr500 million ($280 million).

The move is intended to make the Swiss bourse more competitive and maintain jobs.

swissinfo with agencies

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