June 3, 2010 - Phil Hodgen

Ratification of UBS agreement moving through Swiss Parliament

It is moving forward as expected.

See Senate paves way for US to get UBS client data for latest political developments in Switzerland.

Approval is needed by both bodies of the Swiss Parliament — the Senate and House of Representatives. The Senate has now acted. The process is half completed.

From the article, a brief synopsis of the politics involved:

Ahead of the debate in parliament the issue had divided political parties. The rightwing Swiss People’s Party rejected the deal for months for “castrating banking secrecy” but later did a U-turn saying the deal was “evil” but that rejecting it would be a bigger evil.

The Radicals were also critical and said UBS should be held responsible for the “catastrophe” it created. The Christian Democrats described it as “yet another perversion of the state of law”.

On the other side, the Social Democrats were fundamentally against banking secrecy and said they would vote for the deal as long as there were supporting measures designed to prevent a future crisis with banks that are “too big to fail”.

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