Swiss voters reject company tax overhaul

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Voters in Switzerland have shocked the political institution by rejecting a reform plan that may have introduced the nation’s company tax system in step with worldwide norms.

The tax reforms, which have been broadly supported by the enterprise neighborhood, would have eliminated a set of particular low-tax privileges that had inspired many multinational firms to arrange store in Switzerland.

Specialists say the way forward for Switzerland’s tax system is now unclear. The vote consequence may create complications for corporations that had been banking on their implementation, and deter firms who had been contemplating a transfer to the nation.

“They do not know what [tax] measures will be available… That is not a very solid basis for making investment decisions,” Peter Uebelhart, head of tax at KPMG in Switzerland, stated in a video assertion.

Switzerland has come underneath intense strain from G20 and OECD nations lately to scrub up its tax system. The nation runs the chance of being “blacklisted” by different nations if it would not change its tax system by 2019.

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Many citizens rejected the tax reform package deal over fears it would scale back the quantity of income collected by the federal government, in keeping with Stefan Kuhn, head of company tax at KPMG in Switzerland. That may have result in tax hikes on the center class.

The present tax system offers preferential remedy to some firms with giant international operations. Worldwide tax authorities say the foundations quantity to unfair company subsidies.

Martin Naville, head of the Swiss-American Chamber of Commerce, stated it is doable that voters did not perceive the complexities of the reforms. The measures have been rejected by 59% of voters.

“I think it’s a very bad day for Switzerland,” Naville stated. “Clearly, the uncertainty and the credibility in the Swiss [system] has taken a massive hit.”

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Swiss authorities say they are going to transfer rapidly to create a modified tax reform proposal. Naville stated he hopes new guidelines are devised inside the subsequent few months.

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“All stakeholders now have to take responsibility to develop an acceptable competitive tax system, and to regain credibility regarding the famed political stability which gave Switzerland such an advantageous position,” he stated in a press release.

Naville hinted that potential tax reforms within the U.S. and U.Okay. may tempt Swiss-based firms to relocate, placing extra strain on Switzerland’s tax base.

CNNMoney (London) First printed February 13, 2017: 10:10 AM ET