Automatic exchange of information (AEOI)
On 15 July 2014 the OECD Council adopted the new global standard for the automatic exchange of financial account information in tax matters internationally.The new global standard is intended to help prevent cross-border tax evasion. The global standard comprises a model agreement, a common reporting standard (CRS), a commentary on interpretation and basic data for an information technology solution.
The common reporting standard (CRS) was published by the OECD in February and sets out guidelines for the automatic exchange of financial information. The CRS defines who must report what information about which accounts and when.
Switzerland signed the Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement (MCAA) on 19 November 2014. The MCAA is based on Art. 6 of the OECD/Council of Europe administrative assistance convention and is intended to ensure the uniform implementation of AEOI. The Federal Act on the International Automatic Exchange of Information in Tax Matters (AEOI Act) is the legal basis for the implementation of the AEOI standard in Switzerland.
From 14 January to 21 April 2015 two consultations took place, one relating to the OECD/Council of Europe administrative assistance convention (signed by Switzerland in 2013) and one relating to the MCAA and AEOI Act. AEOI is to be introduced in Switzerland through bilateral treaties or multilateral agreements with selected partner countries. Switzerland wants to conclude AEOI agreements with the EU (replacing the EU savings tax agreement), the US (converting the FATCA Agreement to Model 1) and other selected countries with which Switzerland has close economic and political relations. The agreements are intended to ensure guaranteed reciprocity, compliance with the principle of speciality (i.e. the information exchanged may only be used to assess and levy taxes (and for criminal tax proceedings)) and adequate data protection.
Please refer to the FDF fact sheet for further information on how the automatic exchange of data works and which data will be exchanged.
Timeline for AEOI implementation in Switzerland
21 April 2015: End of the consultations
11 – 22 May 2015: Interdepartmental consultations
5 June 2015: Approval of the message from the Federal Council
2017: Planned entry into force of AEOI and first collection of account data (all accounts existing on 1 January 2017 and thereafter)
2018: First exchange of information until 30 September 2018 (fort he previous year) with contracting countries