Friday, March 1, 2013

Is This The Real Switzerland Or Just A Public Relations Facade? (3/1/13)

Switzerland is acting like it cares about its banks enabling other country tax evasion.  See Christopher M. Matthews, Switzerland Proposes Tax Evasion Crackdown (WSJ Blog 2/28/13), here.  I guess that it wants other countries and the world (except tax evaders who, I suspect, it will continue to welcome) to think that it no longer wants to enable citizens of other countries to commit tax evasion.  Sue.

Here is an excerpt from the WSJ Blog (emphasis supplied):
The Swiss Bankers Association welcomed most of the legislation but said it opposed a proposal requiring banks to review existing customer relationships for tax compliance. 
“The strategy of tax-compliant assets is forward-looking and should hinder the influx of untaxed new assets and should not be applied retroactively,” the group said in a news release Wednesday. ” Under no circumstances should it be extended to include the unilateral solution for the past.”
So, it wants to continue to protect its friends -- tax evaders as well as despots and drug dealers who are Switzerland's friends for the right price.

The statement from the Swiss Bankers Association (Statement from the SBA regarding the implementation of the extended due diligence requirements in tax matters and money laundering (adoption of the FATF guidelines) (2/27/13), is here.

Now, here are some interesting quotes from the SBA statement:
The Swiss Bankers Association (SBA) has long advocated a tax compliant financial centre.  [JAT Note:  just how long? Was it pre-Birkenfeld or post-Birkenfeld?  And, we all know the claim of advocacy (if truthful at all even now) is reluctant advocacy and post-Birkenfeld.  And so forth.] 
The SBA thus generally supports the approach taken by the Swiss Federal Council to embed both the extended due diligence requirements for financial intermediaries aimed at defending against untaxed assets, and the FATF predicate offences for money laundering (incl. tax offences) in the Anti Money Laundering Act (GwG). [JAT Note:  Oh, sure, readers can see where this is going and believe it if they choose to.]

1 comment:

  1. It has already become difficult or even impossible for Americans to be engaged in Swiss financial services and the Swiss government did sign a lousy deal with the US in regards to FATCA. Thus, I don't see much of an issue here.


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