Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedhran informed the Parliament that from September the government will start receiving detailed financial information about all Indian’s having Swiss bank accounts, including those closed since last year.
In a written reply to a Lok Sabha question, he said that “India will start receiving information on an automatic basis from September about financial accounts held in Switzerland by Indian residents.”
The details that Switzerland would share with Indian tax authorities under the Automatic Exchange of Information (AEOI) framework would include account numbers, credit balance and all kinds of financial income for each Indian client of every Swiss financial institution.
The first set in September would be followed by further dispatches on a yearly basis, according to Switzerland’s Federal Department of Finance (FDF).
This would be in addition to details already being shared by Switzerland with India for nearly 100 Indian entities, including individuals and enterprises, on submission of prima facie evidence of their financial wrongdoings, under a bilateral pact for administrative assistance on tax matters.
Besides, the India-Switzerland tax treaty facilitates receipt of the information on a request basis for cases under investigation, he said.
“The information received on request or on automatic the basis may include information about persons allegedly involved in corruption,” the minister said.
Asked whether the government would reveal those names, the minister, however, said the “use and disclosure of the information” is governed by confidentiality provisions.
Explaining the AEOI with India, which has come into force from January 1, 2018, the FDF said Switzerland, as global wealth management the hub is committed to contributing to the integrity of the international financial system and to a level playing field.
“Switzerland applies the international transparency standards and therefore actively support India in its fight against tax fraud and evasion,” it said.
Under the AEOI framework, detailed financial information on all Indian residents that have an account maintained by a Swiss financial an institution in 2018 will be provided for the first time to the Indian tax authorities in September 2019 and on a yearly basis thereafter.
The information would include accounts that were closed during 2018, it said.
(With Agency inputs)