Swiss Bankers Want New Tax

September 18, 2009 International Tax CooperationOffshore BankingTaxation in Switzerland  No comments

The Swiss Bankers Association (SBA) is calling for Switzerland’s government to instate a withholding tax on earnings generated by foreign held Swiss bank accounts.

In order to save what remains of Switzerland’s weakened privacy laws the SBA has come up with an alternative to automatic international financial information sharing, as is proposed now. It is envisaged that a withholding tax could be levied on the interest, dividends, investment income and capital gains generated by accounts held by foreigners.

The tax will be levied at the level of the country of origin for the funds. Upon collection the tax funds will be transferred between appropriate banks, with client information only being seen by the institutions...

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Tax Amnesty Begins for Italians

September 17, 2009 Offshore BankingTax HavensTaxation in EUTaxation in Italy  No comments

The Italian Government has launched a tax amnesty program for the declaration of funds held in offshore accounts.

Beginning on the 15th of September, Italians will have opportunity to declare their offshore accounts to the government. The tax amnesty, which will last until the 15th of April 2010, will allow Italian nationals to protect themselves from future penalties and criminal prosecution for their undeclared assets, in turn facing only a 5% penalty on the account’s total value.

The tax amnesty applies to private individuals, partnerships and non-commercial associations. Limited liability companies and those already under investigation for tax fraud are not eligible. Those applying have two options available for their funds – repatriation and regularization...

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Insurers Threaten to Leave the UK

September 16, 2009 Taxation in EUTaxation in UK  No comments

The Association of British Insurers has warned that unless taxation is made more competitive in the UK, insurance providers and their executives will shift their business offshore.

The Association of British Insurers (ABI) called on the British government to address aspects of the taxation system in order to quell concerns of the insurance industry. In a paper titled “UK Competitiveness: the way forward for insurance”, published on the 15th of September, the AIB released results of a survey conducted on insurance providers and their managers, along with a list of proposals of changes in British taxation.

According to the ABI publication, 81% of UK based insurers believe that if the British taxation system stays the same as it is now the number of insurance providers resident in the UK...

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Capital Gains Tax Unlikely in New Zealand

September 15, 2009 Taxation in New Zealand  No comments

Comments made by the New Zealand Prime Minister has effectively put an end to discussion surrounding the introduction of a Capital Gains Tax in New Zealand.

In a statement made on the 14th of September, John Key, New Zealand Prime Minister, cast serious doubt on the idea of introducing a capital gains tax in New Zealand. The Prime Minister had previously been hesitant to rule out a capital gains tax, so as not to limit the process of the Tax Working Group. Yet now that the working group is open in their discussion of the matter, the head of government has stated that he would require “an awful lot of convincing” on the matter and would want “meteoric evidence” supporting it.

The Capital Gains Tax discussion has centered around the sale of property and housing...

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France to Introduce Carbon Tax

September 14, 2009 Taxation in EUTaxation in France  No comments

An ambitious shift in taxation has been announced in France, loading levies on pollution while alleviating pressure in other taxation areas.

Nicolas Sarkozy, President of France, revealed plans on the 10th of September at a speech made in Culoz, for the introduction of a Carbon Tax in France. The Carbon Tax bill, which is slated to come into effect on the 1st of January 2010, will see an €17 levy imposed on each tone of carbon dioxide produced. The bill covers carbon emissions from petrol, gas and coal. No levies will be installed in electricity usage, as only 20% of France’s power production comes from non nuclear or renewable sources. Additionally, electricity produced in French power stations is already covered a Europe spanning carbon quota system.

If passed through parliament, Fra...

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