Introduction of OECD/G20 minimum tax rate with effect from 1 January 2024

Bern, 22.12.2023 - The OECD/G20 minimum tax rate will be introduced as planned. During its meeting on 22 December 2023, the Federal Council decided to begin levying the supplementary tax in Switzerland from 1 January 2024. This will prevent erosion of the tax base in favour of other countries. The Federal Council will decide on other elements of the OECD/G20 regulatory framework at a later date.

On 18 June 2023, a significant majority of the people and the cantons voted in favour of a special tax regime for large corporate groups.

The Federal Council was thus mandated to implement the OECD/G20 minimum tax rate temporarily by means of an ordinance. The transitional provision in the Federal Constitution provides for a supplementary tax in this regard. Within six years of the ordinance entering into force, the Federal Council must submit a bill to Parliament that replaces the Minimum Taxation Ordinance.

The minimum tax rate will be implemented in the form of a national supplementary tax. With this supplementary tax, Switzerland will ensure a minimum domestic tax rate of 15% for large multinational enterprises whose turnover exceeds EUR 750 million. This will prevent erosion of the Swiss tax base in favour of other countries.

The transitional provision in the Constitution contains key requirements for the ordinance. With regard to these rules, the Federal Council applied the following guiding principles to the implementation of the minimum tax rate in Switzerland:

  • International compatibility: The Swiss regulations should be accepted internationally, in order to provide Swiss-based businesses with the greatest possible legal certainty. For this purpose, the ordinance must be in line with the OECD/G20 regulations.

  • Preserve Switzerland's economic interests: Where explicitly permitted or provided for in the OECD/G20 regulations, room for manoeuvre and voting rights should be used in the interests of the Swiss location.

  • Avoid administrative hurdles: The administrative burden for businesses and cantonal tax authorities should be kept as low as possible.

The proposed design of the national supplementary tax met with broad acceptance in principle during the consultation phase. However, the Federal Council made changes and additions, in order to take the results of the consultation into account.

It also observed that the prerequisites for putting the supplementary tax into force in Switzerland with effect from 1 January 2024 have been met, in particular now that the vast majority of EU states and other Western industrialised nations such as the United Kingdom plus South Korea have opted to implement the regulations as of the same date. By contrast, the Federal Council has decided to initially refrain from applying the international supplementary tax rules IIR and UTPR. In this regard, it will continue to monitor international developments and decide about implementation at a later date, should this prove necessary in order to preserve Swiss interests.

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