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Swiss banks name new president

Pierre Mirabaud will be the new president of the Swiss Bankers Association

(Keystone Archive)

Pierre Mirabaud, one of Geneva's leading private bankers, is to become president of the Swiss Bankers Association (SBA).

Mirabaud will replace Georg Krayer, who on Monday announced his decision to quit after eleven years in the post.

The bankers association is one of Switzerland's leading business lobbies, and has been actively involved in tackling controversial issues such as banking secrecy and the row surrounding dormant accounts dating back to the Second World War.

Krayer's tenure

During Krayer's tenure, Switzerland's banking industry underwent some of its most dramatic changes - including the merger of banking giants Swiss Bank Corporation and the former UBS.

The association has also become increasingly active in defending the Swiss banking industry's interests in the global media.

When the scandal over dormant Holocaust accounts first erupted in Switzerland in 1996, the association had only one media officer.

Today, the association's public relations team is one of its largest divisions.

The SBA's 55-year-old incoming president is a senior partner with Mirabaud & Cie, a well-known private bank founded in 1819.

Battles ahead

He is likely to continue the association's aggressive defence of Switzerland's system of banking secrecy.

"Why," asked Mirabaud in a recent interview, "should Switzerland renounce its traditions of banking privacy just because the tax systems of neighbouring countries do not work properly or efficiently?"

In a statement released on Monday, the association's board said Mirabaud's appointment reflected his experience and profile within the Swiss banking industry.

Mirabaud will formally take office on September 19.

swissinfo, Jacob Greber in Zurich

Key facts

Pierre Mirabaud is to become the new president of the Swiss Bankers Association.
Mirabaud is a senior partner at the Geneva-based private bank, Mirabaud & Cie.
The outgoing president, Georg Krayer, spent eleven years in the post.

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