According to the annual report titled “Banks in Switzerland 2019” published by the Switzerland’s central bank, the Swiss National Bank, the money of Pakistani nationals kept in the country’s banks has decreased by 50% to $377, lowest ever level.
Since 2015, Pakistanis have consistently been withdrawing the wealth stored in the Swiss banks after a revised taxation treaty was signed between Pakistan and Switzerland.
In 2018, money kept by Pakistani nationals in Swiss banks stood at around $754 million.
The direct assets of Pakistani nationals kept in Swiss banks had peaked in 2015 when it crossed the worth of $1.5 billion.
On the other hand, the assets of Pakistani nationals kept in Swiss banks through trustees or wealth managers has increased to $527 million in 2019 from the $316 million of 2018.
The report notes that tax amnesty schemes accorded by former PM Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and incumbent PM Imran Khan and poor administrative structure of the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) have impeded Pakistan’s ability to benefit from the exchange of information by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
In 2018 and 2019, OECD shared the details of $7.5 billion kept in 154,000 OECD bank accounts owned by 57,450 Pakistani nationals with Pakistan.
However, just $6 million have been recovered so far, as revealed by the FBR’s Directorate General of International Taxes in a meeting of a parliamentary committee.