Indian money in Swiss banks climbs to over 30,500 Cr, highest in 14 years

Swiss National Bank (SNB) Headquarters in Bern, Switzerland. [Photo: Wikimedia]

Money parked by Indian entities jumped to a 14-year-high of 3.83 billion Swiss francs (over Rs 30,500 crores) in 2021, according to annual data released by Switzerland’s central bank.

The Swiss National Bank (SNB) data takes into account all types of funds, including deposits from enterprises, banks and individuals. This includes data for branches of Swiss banks in India, as also non-deposit liabilities. These are figures reported by banks to the SNB and do not include the money that might have been in Swiss banks in the names of third-country entities.

In 2016, India and Switzerland signed a joint declaration for the automatic sharing of financial account information.

The use and disclosure of the information received are governed by the confidentiality provisions of the India-Switzerland tax treaty.

Earlier, India’s finance ministry had said the figures “do not indicate the quantum of much-debated alleged black money held by Indians in Switzerland”.

Swiss authorities have always maintained that they support India’s fight against tax fraud and evasion, and since 2018, detailed financial information on all Indian residents is provided every year.

2021 marked the second consecutive year of increase after deposits fell in 2018 and 2019. The total amount has declined by a lot since hitting a record high of nearly 6.5 billion Swiss francs in 2006.

Zurich-based SNB’s data revealed that customer deposits went to a seven-year high of about Rs 4,800 crores, whereas holdings via securities and similar instruments also witnessed a sharp increase

The UK topped the list for foreign clients’ money in Swiss banks at CHF 379 billion, followed by the US at No. 2 with CHF 168 billion.

India was placed in the 44th place, ahead of countries like Sweden, Poland, Bangladesh, Oman, South Korea, Bahrain, and New Zealand. Among BRICS nations, India stood above South Africa and Brazil but below Russia (15th) and China (24th).


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