Bern, 02.02.2017 - On 2 February 2017, the Federal Department of Finance (FDF) initiated the consultation on introducing the automatic exchange of information (AEOI) in tax matters with additional countries. The implementation of the AEOI is planned for 1 January 2018 so that the first exchange of information will take place in 2019. The consultation will last until 13 April 2017.
The countries affected by the consultation are as follows: China, Indonesia, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Liechtenstein, Colombia, Malaysia, the United Arab Emirates, Montserrat, Aruba, Curaçao, Belize, Costa Rica, Antigua and Barbuda, Grenada, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, the Cook Islands and the Marshall Islands. In order to join Switzerland’s network of AEOI partner states, these additional countries will have to respect the principle of speciality and safeguard the confidentiality of the data delivered.
The introduction of the AEOI with these states and territories confirms Switzerland's international commitment to implementing the AEOI standard. It is thereby reaffirming its intention to introduce the automatic exchange of information with states and territories that meet the requirements of the international AEOI standard, which has a positive impact on the integrity and competitiveness of Switzerland's financial centre. The vast majority of the countries committed to the application of the AEOI, and in particular the other international financial centres, have also included these states and territories in their lists of AEOI partner states.
The consultation is running parallel to the consultation initiated on 1 December 2016 regarding the introduction of the AEOI with further states and territories from 2018/2019. Once the consultations have been completed, both proposals are to be merged into a single item and submitted to Parliament.
From a legal viewpoint, the AEOI with the aforementioned states and territories will be implemented based on the Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement on the Automatic Exchange of Financial Account Information (MCAA). The MCAA is based on the international standard for the exchange of information developed by the OECD.
Switzerland introduced the AEOI with all EU member states including Gibraltar in 2017, as well as with Australia, Iceland, Norway, Japan, Canada, South Korea and the British crown dependencies of Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man. Data will be exchanged for the first time with these 38 states and territories in 2018.