Wealth tax removal sees sharp rise in Swedish repatriations

There has been a sharp rise in the volume of previously undeclared offshore assets repatriated to Sweden since the start of 2013, following the abolition of wealth tax.

The tax was removed by the governing coalition in 2007, but the Swedish Tax Agency was still able to apply it to undeclared assets for a further five years – through 2012.

Since 1 January 2013, the tax is no long applied, and there has been a resulting increase in the amount of previously undeclared assets returning to the country. These are now subject only to tax on returns not on wealth.

Local newspaper Dagens Indstri reports that those who volunteer the information on their assets and pay relevant tax will not be hit by prosecution for tax avoidance. Over the past three years some SEK1.2bn (€140m) in additional tax revenue has been generated this way from some 3,000 tax cases, the paper notes.

Sweden has signed tax information exchange agreements with some 40 jurisdictions in recent years, including Switzerland, while the OECD members have been stepping up their cooperation to identify tax avoiders.

Four key so-called tax havens remain on the list of jurisdictions the Swedish government would like to sign agreements with: Hong Kong, Singapore, Qatar and UAE.


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