Spontaneous exchange of information: Federal Council adopts new Administrative Assistance Ordinance

Bern, 23.11.2016 - During its meeting on 23 November 2016, the Federal Council adopted the total revision of the Tax Administrative Assistance Ordinance (TAAO) and will bring it into force on 1 January 2017. The new ordinance defines the framework and the procedures required for the spontaneous exchange of information including those that apply for the exchange of information on advance tax rulings.

The new ordinance contains in particular provisions on the procedure and on the information that is to be disclosed to foreign tax authorities and on the deadline requirements with the spontaneous exchange of information. For the specific case of the advance tax rulings, the ordinance defines which categories are subject to spontaneous exchanges and which countries have to be informed. From the old ordinance, there are no changes on the provisions on group requests.

The revised ordinance will enter into force on 1 January 2017. The first spontaneous exchanges of information with Switzerland will take place from 1 January 2018 onwards and will apply for tax periods starting from then.

The consultation on the draft ordinance ended on 10 August 2016. Most of the consultation participants agreed to the draft. A series of their comments will be taken into account in the definitive ordinance.

The new ordinance provisions are compatible with the OECD and G20 project to combat base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS project). They are based on the OECD/Council of Europe Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters (the Convention) and the revised Tax Administrative Assistance Act (TAAA) which the Federal Council also brought into force on 1 January 2017. The spontaneous exchange of information will be limited to the states that have signed the Convention.

Address for enquiries

Beat Werder, Head of Communications, State Secretariat for International Financial Matters SIF
Tel. +41 58 469 79 47, beat.werder@sif.admin.ch


The Federal Council

Federal Department of Finance