Christian Aid is urging the UK government to abandon its “shoddy” tax deal with Switzerland, after the upper house of the German Parliament struck down its own similar treaty with Switzerland.
“We’re delighted that the Bundesrat has rejected this damaging treaty,” said Christian Aid's Joseph Stead. “The UK government should re-examine its own agreement in light of this and follow suit.”
The British Prime Minister, David Cameron, said last week that he wanted to see tax justice around the world. Christian Aid say the UK’s deal with Switzerland will do the very opposite.
Stead insisted, “To collect the taxes they are owed, poor countries need the Swiss to tell their tax authorities who has money in their banks. That will help them catch up with tax evaders, bribe-takers and others with money to hide.”
Christian Aid argued that Cameron's “dirty deal” with Switzerland preserves financial secrecy, harming the UK and the rest of the world.
“It is also unfair to law-abiding UK taxpayers because the deal allows people who have hidden money in Swiss bank accounts to remain anonymous and unpunished, even though many of them are tax evaders,” said Stead.
Christian Aid recently applauded David Cameron when he said he wanted to use the G8 meeting, which the UK will host next summer, to push forward global action on tax and transparency.
“Scrapping the UK-Swiss tax deal would be a great place to start,” said Stead.