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India has acquired the third set of Swiss checking account particulars of with Switzerland as a part of an annual train underneath which the European nation has shared particulars of practically 33 lakh monetary accounts with 96 nations.

The Federal Tax Administration (FTA) of Switzerland mentioned in an announcement on Monday that the change of data this yr concerned 10 extra nations — Antigua and Barbuda, Azerbaijan, Dominica, Ghana, Lebanon, Macau, Pakistan, Qatar, Samoa and Vauatu.

While the change was reciprocal with 70 nations, Switzerland acquired info however didn’t present any within the case of 26 nations — both as a result of these nations don’t but meet the worldwide necessities on confidentiality and information safety (14) or as a result of they selected to not obtain information (12).

While the FTA didn’t disclose names and additional particulars of all 96 nations, officers mentioned India figured amongst these having acquired the data for the third yr in a row and the main points shared with Indian authorities pertained to numerous people and firms having accounts in Swiss monetary establishments.

The change occurred final month and the subsequent set of data can be shared by Switzerland in September 2022.

India had acquired the primary set of particulars from Switzerland underneath AEOI in September 2019. It was amongst 75 nations to get such info that yr. Last yr, India was amongst 86 such associate nations.

According to consultants, the AEOI information acquired by India has been fairly helpful for establishing a robust prosecution case towards those that have any unaccounted wealth, because it gives complete particulars of deposits and transfers in addition to of all earnings, together with by investments in securities and different property.

On the situation of anonymity, officers mentioned the main points relate largely to businessmen, together with non-resident Indians now settled in a number of South-East Asian nations in addition to within the US, the UK and even some African and South American nations.

Switzerland had agreed to AEOI with India after an extended course of, together with a evaluate of the required authorized framework in India on information safety and confidentiality.

The exchanged particulars embody identification, account and monetary info, together with identify, deal with, nation of residence and tax identification quantity, as effectively info regarding the reporting monetary establishment, account stability and capital revenue.

For three years now, India has been amongst distinguished nations with which Switzerland has shared these particulars.

Besides, Swiss authorities have already shared details about greater than 100 Indian residents and entities to date this yr on receipt of requests for administrative help in circumstances involving probes into monetary wrongdoings together with tax evasion, the officers added. This rely has been comparable up to now few years.

These circumstances largely relate to older accounts that may have been closed earlier than 2018, for which Switzerland has shared particulars with India underneath an earlier framework of mutual administrative help as Indian authorities had supplied prima facie proof of tax-related wrongdoing by these account holders. AEOI is relevant solely to accounts which are energetic or had been closed throughout 2018.

Some of those circumstances relate to entities arrange by Indians in numerous abroad jurisdictions like Panama, the British Virgin Islands and the Cayman Islands, whereas the people embody largely businessmen and some politicians and erstwhile royals in addition to their members of the family.

The officers, nonetheless, refused to share particulars in regards to the actual variety of accounts or the quantum of property held within the accounts held by Indians, for which the data has been shared with India, citing strict confidentiality clauses governing the change framework.

The exchanged info permits tax authorities to confirm whether or not taxpayers have appropriately declared their monetary accounts of their tax returns.

For the primary time, Switzerland has additionally agreed this yr to share particulars about actual property property owned by foreigners there, however the details about contributions to non-profit organisations and different such foundations, as additionally particulars on investments in digital currencies nonetheless stay out of bounds from AEOI framework.

This is being seen as a key milestone within the Indian authorities’s battle towards black cash allegedly stashed overseas, as authorities will have the ability to get the entire info on flats, flats and condominiums owned by Indians in Switzerland as additionally on earnings made out of such properties to assist it look into tax liabilities related to these property.

The transfer assumes significance on the a part of Switzerland which is attempting arduous to reposition itself as a key international monetary centre whereas avoiding the long-persisting notion in regards to the Swiss banking system being an alleged secure haven for black cash.

Experts and people engaged within the enterprise of attracting investments to Switzerland imagine the transfer would additionally assist clear misconceptions about all fund inflows into Swiss property being illicit and would go a good distance in establishing Switzerland as a most well-liked funding vacation spot, together with for actual property properties.

The FTA mentioned it despatched info on round 33 lakh monetary accounts to the associate states and acquired info on round 21 lakh accounts from them.

“The FTA cannot provide any information on the amount of financial assets,” it added.

Switzerland’s first such change occurred on the finish of September 2018 and concerned 36 nations, however India didn’t determine within the checklist at the moment.

The Global Forum of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) opinions AEOI implementation. 


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