The Straits Times
Published on Dec 14, 2012

Bern steps up fight against tax evasion


GENEVA (AFP) - Switzerland aims to clamp down on foreigners' use of its banks to skirt paying taxes at home, which has soured relations with its neighbours and trading partners, the government said on Friday.

In a statement, the government said it was "stepping up its efforts to combat abuses in the area of money laundering and taxation."

It called on the finance ministry to quickly draw up a proposal for a new law that would criminalise serious tax evasion on an equal footing with money laundering.

That move, which is in line with recommendations from the international Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering (FATF), would mark the first true criminalisation of tax evasion in Switzerland.