It is the world’s largest offshore wealth center but now Switzerland is set to end what it is famous for – keeping its banking secret.
The country has made what is seen as a huge step towards banking transparency after it signed a convention with the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
Under the terms of the agreement it will exchange data with 60 member countries. The Swiss government can call on its largest private banks to turn over confidential information to international tax watchdogs.
Switzerland already has a bilateral tax collection agreement with the UK and Austria but it has been under intense global pressure to cooperate with oversees authorities about accounts in its banks. The system has been reportedly misused by account holders from across the world to evade taxes in their own jurisdiction.