India obtains details of residents’ Swiss bank accounts


Swiss authorities on Monday shared the first details with India about financial accounts of its residents in Swiss banks under a new automatic exchange of information framework between the two countries, said media reports.

An unidentified spokesperson for the Federal Tax Administration (FTA) told the Press Trust of India (PTI) news agency that India was among the 75 countries with which Switzerland has exchanged information about the financial accounts within the global standards of automatic exchange of information.

The spokesperson said the next exchange will take place in 2020.

“According to the international agreement in place, the exchanges have to take place within nine months after the end of the respective calendar year,” the spokesperson said regarding the next exchange of information with India.

“This means the exchange takes place in September, except for corrections.”

According to PTI, this is the first time India has received the financial information of accounts held by Indian clients in Switzerland for 2018 and subsequent years. However, details of Swiss bank accounts held before 2018 were not made available to India, and the other given information is governed by strict confidentiality clauses.

The FTA official also declined to disclose specific details on the number of accounts or amount of financial assets associated with Indian clients of Swiss banks.

There were at least 100 cases of older accounts held by Indians that might have been closed before 2018, PTI reported. For this, Switzerland is still in the process of sharing details with India under an earlier framework of mutual administrative assistance because Indian authorities have provided prima facie evidence of tax-related wrongdoing by those account holders.

The information provided by Swiss authorities includes names, addresses and tax identification numbers. It also includes details concerning the financial institutions, account balances and capital income, said PTI.
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