India gets second set of Swiss bank account details under automatic info exchange framework

The info exchange this 12 months concerned practically 3.1 million (31 lakh) monetary accounts, FTA stated in a press release on Friday

India has received the second set of Swiss bank account details of its nationals and entities under the automatic exchange of info pact with Switzerland, marking a key milestone within the government’s fight against black money allegedly stashed overseas.

India is among the many 86 nations with which Switzerland’s Federal Tax Administration (FTA) has exchanged info on monetary accounts inside the framework of international requirements on AEOI this 12 months.

India had acquired the primary set of details from Switzerland in September 2019 under AEOI (Automatic Exchange of Information), when it concerned 75 nations.

The info exchange this 12 months concerned practically 3.1 million (31 lakh) monetary accounts, FTA stated in a press release on Friday. The quantity of such accounts was related in 2019.

While the assertion didn’t explicitly title India among the many 86 nations, officers informed PTI that India is among the many outstanding nations with which Switzerland has shared details about monetary accounts of purchasers of Swiss banks and varied different monetary establishments.

The officers additional stated a “sizeable number” pertains to Indian residents and entities within the general exchange of details about over three million monetary accounts by Switzerland this 12 months with 86 nations.

Besides, Swiss authorities have already shared details about greater than 100 Indian residents and entities prior to now one 12 months on receipt of requests for administrative help in instances involving probes into monetary wrongdoings together with tax evasion, the officers added.

These instances largely relate to older accounts that may have been closed earlier than 2018, for which Switzerland has shared details with India under 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 might be lively or have been closed throughout 2018.

Some of these instances relate to entities set up by Indians in varied abroad jurisdictions like Panama, British Virgin Islands and Cayman Islands, whereas the people embrace largely businessmen and some politicians and erstwhile royals in addition to their members of the family.

The officers, nevertheless, refused to share details concerning the actual quantity of accounts or the quantum of belongings held within the accounts held by Indians, for which the knowledge has been shared with India, citing strict confidentiality clauses governing the exchange framework.

The info shared by Swiss authorities embrace identification, account and monetary info, akin to title, deal with, nation of residence and tax identification quantity, in addition to info in regards to the reporting monetary establishment, account steadiness and capital earnings.

The exchanged info will permit tax authorities to confirm whether or not taxpayers have appropriately declared their monetary accounts of their tax returns. The subsequent exchange would happen in September 2021.

In its assertion, FTA stated the 86 nations lined under the AEOI this 12 months embrace 11 new jurisdictions — Anguilla, Aruba, Bahamas, Bahrain, Grenada, Israel, Kuwait, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Panama and the United Arab Emirates — along with the prevailing checklist of 75 nations, with whom info was shared final 12 months.

Further, FTA stated the exchange of info this 12 months has been reciprocal with 66 nations. In the case of 20 nations, Switzerland acquired info however didn’t present any, both as a result of these nations don’t but meet the worldwide necessities on confidentiality and information safety (9 nations) or as a result of they selected to not obtain information (11 nations).

A complete of 38 nations will provide their information to Switzerland in accordance with the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes (Global Forum) by December 31, 2020. These nations have claimed technical difficulties as a result of COVID-19 disaster.

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

Currently, round 8,500 reporting monetary establishments (banks, trusts, insurers, and many others) are registered with FTA. These establishments collected the info and transferred it to FTA. The rely has elevated from about 7,500 final 12 months.

fta despatched info on round 3.1 million monetary accounts to the accomplice states and acquired info on round 8,15,000 monetary accounts from them.

fta additionally stated it can’t present any info on the quantity of monetary belongings.

switzerland has dedicated itself to adopting the worldwide normal for the worldwide automatic exchange of info in tax issues. the authorized foundation for the implementation of aeoi in switzerland got here into power on january 1, 2017.

that is the second time that india has acquired details from swiss authorities under aeoi framework, which supplies for the exchange of info on monetary accounts, at the moment lively in addition to these accounts that have been closed throughout 2018, the 12 months during which the framework settlement grew to become efficient.

However, AEOI solely pertains to accounts which might be formally within the title of Indians they usually would possibly embrace these used for enterprise and different real functions.

The Global Forum of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development critiques AEOI implementation.

According to specialists, the info acquired by India may be fairly helpful for establishing a robust prosecution case in opposition to those that have any unaccounted wealth, because it supplies whole details of deposits and transfers in addition to of all earnings, together with by means of investments in securities and different belongings.

On situation of anonymity, a number of officers stated the details 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.

A Swiss delegation was in India in August final 12 months earlier than the primary set of details may get shared and the 2 sides additionally mentioned doable steps to expedite the execution of tax information-sharing requests made by India in particular instances.

It is feared many Indians might need closed their accounts after a global crackdown on black money led to Switzerland buckling under worldwide strain to open its banking sector for scrutiny to clear the long-held notion of Swiss banks being secure haven for undisclosed funds.

Switzerland agreed to AEOI with India after a protracted course of, together with a assessment of the mandatory authorized framework in India on information safety and confidentiality.

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