India receives third set of Swiss bank details of its nationals

Written by Shankhyaneel Sarkar | Edited by Avik Roy, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

India received the third set of Swiss bank account details of its citizens under the automatic exchange of information pact with Switzerland, news agency PTI reported. Switzerland’s Federal Tax Administration (FTA) on Monday said that along with India, information was exchanged with Antigua and Barbuda, Azerbaijan, Dominica, Ghana, Lebanon, Macau, Pakistan, Qatar, Samoa and Vanuatu.

The details will also include the amount of real estate properties owned by Indians in Switzerland, officials familiar with the developments told the news agency. This is the first time data related to real estate is being included in the set of details.

The information is likely to shed light on flats, apartments and condominiums owned by Indians in Switzerland attached with full information about the properties. The set of details is a milestone for the Indian government which says that it is fighting against black money allegedly stashed abroad.

Switzerland’s participation in the information exchange pact shows the European nation’s intent to become a key global financial centre and ward off the perception that the Swiss banking system acts as a safe haven for black money.

Switzerland on Monday shared particulars of nearly 33 lakh financial accounts with 96 countries. The exchange between India and Switzerland took place last month. India first received the first set of details in September 2019 under the AEOI (Automatic Exchange of Information). It will receive the next set of details in September 2022.

Switzerland’s FTA also said that it received reciprocal information from 70 nations. It however did not provide any information to 26 countries. The FTA said that those countries either did not yet meet the international requirements on confidentiality and data security or they willfully chose not to receive information.

While the data related to real estate is available, the Swiss government said that contributions to non-profit organisations and details on investments in digital currencies are out of bounds of the AEOI.

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