by swisscham in Bilateral Relations
On 13 October 2017, the Federal Council submitted the agreements on the introduction of the automatic exchange of financial account information (AEOI) with Hong Kong and Singapore for consultation. The agreement with Hong Kong was signed by Switzerland on the same day, the agreement with Singapore had already been signed on 17 July 2017. The consultation will run until 27 January 2018. It is important for Switzerland’s financial sector that the same competitive conditions exist all over the world. The introduction of the AEOI with competing financial centres is of particular importance. Hong Kong and Singapore are two of the world’s leading financial centres. Based on specific bilateral agreements, the Federal Council intends to introduce the AEOI with Singapore and Hong Kong in 2018 and exchange data for the first time in 2019. In order to meet the time schedule set, the Federal Council has initially decided to introduce the AEOI with both countries provisionally from 1 January 2018. The committees responsible approved the provisional application of the agreements in June 2017. By law, the Federal Council has six months from the start of the provisional application to submit the matter to Parliament for approval. The Federal Council expects to submit the dispatch on both agreements for adoption in spring 2018. This will ensure that Parliament can deal with the proposal as part of the ordinary procedure.