Tax accords backed by parliament

A series of double taxation accords that were revised to keep Switzerland off a tax haven “grey list” have been passed by parliament.

This content was published on June 10, 2010 minutes

The ten agreements, updated in line with international transparency standards set by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), were approved by the House of Representatives on Thursday. They were backed by the Senate in March.

Switzerland was last year placed on an OECD grey list of countries that had pledged to meet international standards, but not yet ratified bilateral treaties.

It was removed from the list in September after revising and signing 12 double taxation accords, as required by the OECD. The revisions did away with a distinction between fraud and evasion which determined whether administrative aid could be given to other countries cracking down on tax cheats.

Accords were passed on Thursday with Austria, Britain, Denmark, Finland, France, Luxembourg, Mexico, Norway, Qatar and the United States. Another ten have been signed with other countries but have yet to be ratified by parliament.

Citizens may still have the final say on the basic change to the accords if a referendum is launched on the issue. and agencies

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