Switzerland, Singapore join clampdown on bank secrecy

PARIS Tue May 6, 2014 9:45am EDT

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PARIS May 6 (Reuters) - Switzerland and Singapore joined on Tuesday the ranks of countries agreeing to share tax information in a major step towards restriction of bank secrecy, the OECD said.

The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development's 34 members and 13 other countries signed a pledge on Tuesday at the OECD to gather tax related information from financial institutions and automatically exchange it on an annual basis.

While most of the countries had already in the past committed to sharing tax information on an automatic basis, Switzerland and Singapore, which both have important bank sectors built in part on banking secrecy, have now also signed up.

"It's clearly the end of bank secrecy abused for tax purposes," OECD tax director Pascal Saint Amans told journalists. (Reporting by Leigh Thomas; Editing by Ingrid Melander)

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