Saturday, June 05, 2010

Swiss Upper House Backs UBS Deal With U.S.

On Thursday, a Swiss and U.S. deal to end the tax dispute involving UBS was approved by the upper house and is closer to being approved by the full Parliament. The lower house is expected to vote on the deal next week and many predict they will give the package a thumbs up as Switzerland’s main political party officially took back their objection to the deal in May.

“The vote of the SVP will also be key in the lower house,” said Fabio Abate, a member of the Liberal Party who sits in the lower house. “But I think in the end a majority should back the UBS deal.”

However a green light is not yet certain.

“I think it will be slightly more difficult in the lower house,” President Doris Leuthard of Switzerland told the television network SFInfo when asked about the chances of the lower house supporting the UBS deal.

The upper house also voted on Thursday against allowing a referendum on the tax deal. But the question is still open on whether the lower house would do the same, Mr. Abate said. A referendum would delay by several months the UBS agreement from coming into force.

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