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Switzerland agrees to exchange tax data with UK

Switzerland has agreed a tax information protocol with the UK, as it moves to reinvent itself ahead of the next G20 symposium in a little over two week’s time.

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Switzerland has agreed a tax information protocol with the UK, as it moves to reinvent itself ahead of the next G20 symposium in two weeks’ time.

The agreement, announced on Monday, represented the sixth double tax agreement Switzerland has signed thus far that meets the standards of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation & Development (OECD). It comes as Switzerland, known for its famously secretive banks, attempts to cater for the demands of large, cash-strapped nations for more information about their citizens’ undeclared offshore holdings.

“The days when hiding money offshore represented a viable means of evading UK tax are rapidly drawing to a close,” financial secretary to the UK Treasury Stephen Timms said in a statement issued by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

The text of the agreement may be accessed on the HMRC website.  

G20 ministers are due to meet next on 24 and 25 September in Pittsburgh, where it is thought the issue of sanctions against those countries still slow to embrace the OECD global tax transparency standard will be discussed.

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