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Europe, News

Swiss aim for tax reform package by early next year

(Adds details and background)

ZURICH, June 11 (Reuters) – Traditionally low-tax Switzerland is readying a package to enhance its competitiveness amid a global push to reform the corporate tax system, the government said on Friday.

“Depending on the progress made at international level, the Federal Council is set to decide on a coordinated reform plan in the first quarter of 2022,” it said in a statement after a cabinet meeting.

Group of Seven finance ministers agreed this month to back a global corporate tax rate of at least 15% to squeeze more money out of sprawling companies such as Amazon and Google , putting pressure on countries like Switzerland.

It was important for Switzerland to set the course now in order to be a competitive location with sustainable growth, innovation, attractive jobs and a high level of prosperity, the cabinet said without giving details of the package.

It expected the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) to reach a political agreement on benchmarks by mid-2021 and to establish detailed provisions by the end of 2021, it said.

The finance ministry has been holding talks for more than a year with the cantons, academics and the business community on how to transpose international standards into Swiss law “as well as internationally accepted measures that will safeguard Switzerland’s appeal as a business location”, it said.

This work would intensify in the months ahead. (Reporting by Michael Shields; Editing by Kevin Liffey and Louise Heavens)

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