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Switzerland: Swiss Tax Reform Proposal 17 on track as first round of hearings are completed

11 July 2017

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Raoul Stocker Jacques Kistler

The Swiss Federal Department of Finance (SFDF) said on April 10 2017 that the designated Steering Committee of the Swiss Federation and the cantons has successfully concluded the first round of hearings with representatives of the Swiss business community, political parties, and the cities and municipalities, in regard to the so-called Tax Reform Proposal 17, which is replacing Corporate Tax Reform III that was rejected by the Swiss electorate in its proposed form.

Broad support for Tax Reform Proposal 17

Tax Reform Proposal 17 enjoys broad support among the various stakeholders. According to the SFDF, the hearings took place in an objective and constructive manner. The need for a comprehensive corporate tax reform is undisputed and there is common ground in regard to the objectives of the Tax Reform Proposal 17, namely to restore international acceptance of the Swiss corporate tax law and to maintain the attractiveness of Switzerland internationally as a business location, while at the same time securing adequate tax revenues at the federal, cantonal and communal levels.

Stakeholders aim for the reform to enter into force as soon as possible

According to the statement of the SFDF, the hearings confirmed the high expectations for Tax Reform Proposal 17. In the interest of legal certainty it is the clear desire of all stakeholders that the reform should enter into force as soon as possible. At its meeting on April 7 2017, the Steering Committee reaffirmed that the Swiss Federation and the cantons should ensure the greatest possible transparency in regard to the legislative process and the financial implications of the proposed tax reform and that cities and municipalities are to be closely involved in the process.

Next steps

The Steering Committee under the lead of the Swiss finance minister, which is tasked with submitting the tax reform proposal to the Swiss Federal Council, is evaluating the findings from the hearings and re-approaching the cities and municipalities in a second round of hearings. It is further expected that the Swiss Federal Council will then determine the basic parameters of the Swiss Tax Reform 17 and decide on the further procedure and timeline in the course of June 2017.

Raoul Stocker ( and Jacques Kistler (
Tel: +41 58 279 6271 and +41 58 279 8164

International Correspondents