Repatriation of declared assets increases to Sweden

More Swedish taxpayers are bringing home assets from so-called tax havens, according to data published by the Swedish Tax Agency (Skatteverket)

During the first three quarter of 2011 some 1,344 people declared income from tax havens, compared to 396 people through all of 2010, the Agency said.

Collectively, this should increase tax revenue by about SEK1bn (€110m), it said.

“We have noticed how more Swedes want to bring their assets home and openly declare their incomes to the Tax Agency,” said Agency analyst Göran Haglund.

In recently years there have been more checks of Swedes hiding their assets. This includes tax information exchanges, which have enabled the Agency to find hidden bank assets and incomes. Sweden has signed deals with 32 countries the OECD previously classed as tax havens. And the tax agreements with Switzerland and Luxembourg have been renegotiated.

According to Swedish tax rules it is possible to volunteer corrections to previous tax returns without risking additional taxes or criminal charges. The corrections must be delivered voluntarily and not as the result of any new investigation by the Tax Agency.

It said it believed the number of corrections from Swedes with assets overseas will continue increasing. Apart from people feeling they need to do the right thing, the Agency said it is becoming more difficult and expensive to keep money hidden.

The tax at source on interest earned in Switzerland and Luxembourg was increased as of 1 July 2011, in line with the EU Savings Directive. The rate is now 35%, which is higher than the capital gains tax of 30% in Sweden.

Of those people who have volunteered corrections to previous tax returns, on the basis of assets overseas, the Tax Agency said most money comes from Switzerland (59%) followed by Luxembourg (18%).


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