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Not a good time for tax evasion to Switzerland

France gets a list of 3000 French taxpayers with bank accounts in Switzerland, according to a report in the weekly Journal du Dimanche . Minister Woerth interviewed by the newspapers says the accounts contained some euro 3 billion , "some of which is very likely linked to tax evasion." (original text: Nous avons récupéré les noms de 3000 contribuables détenteurs de comptes dans les banques suisses dont une partie correspond très probablement à de l'évasion fiscale).

I think that Switzerland is alone in front of the USA and now France. Where are the allies of March to protect banking secrecy?

A couple of days ago Austrian political parties have just agreed to relax the country's banking secrecy regarding foreigners, paving the way for parliamentary approval. This agreement secures the two-thirds majority needed to pass legislation that would help remove Austria from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development's "gray list" of countries not complying with international tax information standard.

Luxembourg was the first "financial center" to quit the OECD "grey list". But the goal was to sign the required agreements as fast as possible knowing that it will be a long shot in practice for foreign tax administration to gather all information required to formulate the request all the more than the OECD tax model includes discretionary loopholes:

In no case shall the provisions be construed so as to impose on a Contracting State the obligation:
 a) to carry out administrative measures at variance with the laws and administrative practice of that or of the other Contracting State;
 b) to supply information which is not obtainable under the laws or in the normal course of the administration of that or of the other Contracting State;
 c) to supply information which would disclose any trade, business, industrial, commercial or professional secret or trade process, or information the disclosure of which would be contrary to public policy (ordre public).

The culture has not changed in Luxembourg. Definitely not.

12:14 Posted in Switzerland | Permalink | Comments (0)

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