German upper house rejects Swiss tax deal

German and Swiss flags Neighbours Germany and Switzerland have been involved in a spat over tax since 2010

Related Stories

Germany's upper house of parliament has rejected a deal with Switzerland to tax German assets held in Swiss bank accounts.

The deal would have allowed Germans with undeclared assets in Switzerland to avoid punishment by making a one-off payment of between 21% and 41% of the value of their assets.

The deal had been negotiated in April and was due to take effect in January.

But it needed to be ratified by both parliaments.

The rejection by the German upper house, the Bundesrat, prolongs the dispute between the two countries over how to deal with the estimated 180-200bn euros (£145-160bn) of German assets hidden in Switzerland.

German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble had called for support for the deal, saying: "The agreement tries to find a better solution for a situation which is unsatisfactory."

But Norbert Walter-Borjans, of the main opposition Social Democrats, told the Bundesrat it was a deal which made "honest taxpayers feel like fools".

Swiss Finance Minister Eveline Widmer-Schlumpf said her government remained "committed to a successful ratification".

And the Swiss Bankers Association said in a statement: "The German upper house has missed a major opportunity to reach a fair, optimum and sustainable solution for all parties to definitively settle the bilateral tax issues."

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More Business stories

RSS

Features & Analysis

  • Cartoon of women chatting on the metroChat wagon

    The interesting things you hear in a women-only carriage


  • Replica of a cargo boxSpecial delivery

    The man who posted himself to the other side of the world


  • Music scoreFinal score Watch

    Goodbye to NYC's last classical sheet music shop


  • Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton checks her Blackberry from a desk inside a C-17 military plane upon her departure from Malta, in the Mediterranean Sea, bound for Tripoli, Libya'Emailgate'

    Hillary gets a taste of scrutiny that lies ahead


Elsewhere on the BBC

  • Audi R8Best in show

    BBC Autos takes a look at 10 of the most eye-catching new cars at the 2015 Geneva motor show

Programmes

  • A cyborg cockroachClick Watch

    The cyborg cockroach - why has a computer been attached to this insect’s nervous system?

Try our new site and tell us what you think. Learn more
Take me there

Copyright © 2015 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.