Black money is no more an issue with India says Swiss envoy

9 January, 2023 | Vaishali Sharma

money National

Switzerland’s ambassador to India Dr. Ralf Heckner stated that black money is no longer a problem in Switzerland-India financial relations because both parties have previously shared multiple...

Switzerland’s ambassador to India Dr. Ralf Heckner stated that black money is no longer a problem in Switzerland-India financial relations because both parties have previously shared multiple batches of information.

Ralf Heckner told ANI that despite being the Swiss ambassador for more than two years, he has heard very nothing regarding black money.”The black money issue has been dealt with by a bilateral treaty between Switzerland and India in 2018 on the automatic exchange of bank information between Switzerland and India. We had several batches of information exchange between Switzerland and India, so the black money issue isn’t the issue anymore. There is not even one cloud over bilateral relations when it comes to financial relations,” he said.

According to certain sources, Indian investment in the Swiss financial sector will skyrocket in 2021. Since the signing of the agreement on automatic sharing of bank information in 2018, Switzerland has transmitted information about Indian account customers in four batches. Switzerland has always been seen as a safe haven for Indian businesspeople, politicians, and entrepreneurs.
According to a press statement from the Swiss Federal Tax Administration, it will share bank account information with 101 nations in 2021. The exchange took done within the context of the worldwide standard for automated information sharing (AEOI). Switzerland has stated its intention to adopt the worldwide standard for international automated sharing of tax information.

The legislative underpinning for AEOI implementation in Switzerland becomes effective on January 1, 2017. Identification, account, and financial information, such as name, address, country of residence, and tax identification number, are exchanged, as well as information on the reporting financial institution, account balance, and capital income.
The information transmitted enables cantonal tax officials to determine whether taxpayers accurately stated their financial accounts abroad in their tax filings. The Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes (Global Forum) of the OECD evaluates AEOI implementation.

Swiss ambassador further said, “I see a lot of convergence now because sustainability is very dear to honourable prime minister and the same applies to the Swiss government. Our government came up with a strategy for Switzerland’s financial centre. The Swiss government wants to see a shift toward sustainability. We are not talking USD 100 billion being invested in climate mitigation or climate adaptation, we are talking about trillions of US dollars being managed by Swiss banking funds, insurance and banks that according to the Swiss government be invested in a sustainable manner.”

He also elaborated on the opportunities for Indian investors in the sustainable financial model.
“What does it mean for India, for example, if you are a sustainable Indian company, you might be the company that the Swiss center would like to invest in. You are an Indian fin-tech company and you have data on sustainable companies and sustainable business models. You might be the company of choice for banks insurances and pension funds in Switzerland to direct money flows to sustainable business solutions,” he said.