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Swiss keen on greater cooperation in black money fight: Arun Jaitley

PTI 24 Jan 2016, 16:03:16 IST
PTI

Davos: Switzerland is "extremely keen" on greater cooperation in India's fight against suspected black money stashed in Swiss banks and is putting in place a new law on automatic information exchange that will take about a year to come into force, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has said.

Till the time the new law comes into force, the Swiss government will continue to provide account details as per the evidence provided by the Indian authorities under an existing arrangement, he added.

Jaitley, who held a bilateral meeting with Swiss Finance Minister Ueli Maurer during his visit here for the WEF Annual Meeting, said they discussed various issues of mutual concern and Switzerland was very keen on greater cooperation in the fight against black money.

"Swiss are extremely keen on this. They are part of the global efforts against unaccounted money," Jaitley told PTI here in an interview.

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"They are in the process of framing a new legislation on international cooperation. They say it will take one year. Till that time, the arrangement entered between India and Switzerland in October 2014 will continue," he said.

Earlier, Maurer had said Switzerland's cooperation on tax matters in terms of sharing information on suspected black money cases would continue at "a good level".

"We have already agreed on more cooperation and this is working well and should continue. We will continue the cooperation at a good level," Maurer had said after meeting Jaitley here.

In the past few months, both countries have been working closely on mutual administrative assistance.

Switzerland, in recent months, has disclosed names of more than a dozen Indians about whom information has been sought by the Indian government amid suspicion that their Swiss bank accounts were being used for stashing illicit funds.

Swiss banks, known for their banking secrecy practices, have come under global pressure as countries, including India, are stepping up efforts to crack down on the black money menace.