Swiss deposits deal edges closer

Athens is just a step away from the completion of an agreement with the Swiss government for the taxation of Greek deposits in banks in Switzerland.

On Sunday and Monday Deputy Finance Minister Giorgos Mavraganis is scheduled to have key meetings with Swiss government and bank representatives in order to seal the terms of the deal that is expected to bring in significant revenues from the funds held in Switzerland.

The plan is along the lines of an agreement already signed by Switzerland, Germany, Austria and the United Kingdom, which allows bank clients to choose between two options: Either to maintain their anonymity and start paying tax of up to 45 percent or present their records and get fully checked by Greek authorities. If any deposits are proven to have been obtained in an illegal fashion they will immediately be confiscated.

The amount of Greek deposits in Switzerland is not known but is estimated at around 20 billion euros, 99 percent of which has not been declared with any tax authority, according to Germany?s Spiegel news magazine.

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