When one thinks of a tax haven, Switzerland typically comes to mind and indeed it does have a reputation since the 1930’s of being an ideal location to park money without fear of company ownership being disclosed to the public or to regulatory bodies. Switzerland has sought to change this view recently by signing up for Automatic Exchange of Information (AEOI) standard.
Automatic Exchange of Information Agreement
Toward the end of May this year (May 2015), Switzerland and other members of the EU signed an agreement regarding the introduction of the global standard for the automatic exchange of information. Switzerland and the 28 EU member states intend to collect information on accounts from 2017 and exchange it from 2018 once there are basic legal systems in place.
By implementing and adhering to the global standard, Switzerland is taking unprecedented steps in preventing tax evasion. While Switzerland is no longer an option to hide your money, it is a great location to have a holding company.
What is a holding Company?
According to Investopedia a holding company is “A parent corporation, limited liability company or limited partnership that owns enough voting stock in another company to control its policies and management. A holding company exists for the sole purpose of controlling another company, which might also be a corporation, limited partnership or limited liability company, rather than for the purpose of producing its own goods or services. Holding companies also exist for the purpose of owning property such as real estate, patents, trademarks, stocks and other assets. If a business is 100% owned by a holding company, it is called a wholly owned subsidiary.”
Advantages of Holding Company In Switzerland
There are several other countries in Europe which offer good terms for holding companies such as Luxemburg, Spain and the UK, but Switzerland offers the best advantages in this sector.
Aidan Healy, Managing Director here at Healy Consultants Group PLC advises that “A holding company registered in Switzerland is exempt from communal corporate tax if the company is only managing long term investments and/ or equity investments that represent two thirds of total assets or income generated by those investments represent over two thirds of the total company income.”
There are several other advantages with effective federal corporate tax at 8% and Switzerland has double taxation treaties with many countries around the world making it a secure and wise choice for your holding company.
If you are interested to set up a company and/or bank account in Switzerland, please contact our subject matter expert, Mr. David Wormley at
Image credit: By MadGeographer [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons