The exchange of bank data between Russia and Switzerland should be stopped, according to the recommendation of the relevant Swiss authority. The issue now rests with the Swiss Federal Council.
Switzerland should cease providing Russia with data on assets held by Russians in Swiss banks. After the National Council committee responsible (Nationalrat) approved the measure, the sister commission of the Council of the cantons (Staenderat) has now also given its blessing. The ball is now in the court of the Federal Council, which is expected to make the final decision in September.
Other Western countries such as Germany, Austria, and Great Britain have already stopped exchanging bank data with Russia.
Switzerland has been automatically supplying Russia with account data of its citizens starting in 2018. The Federal Council faced a great deal of skepticism, for data protection reasons, among other things when it wanted to extend the automatic exchange of information to China and Saudi Arabia.
Withdrawal in Installments
Meanwhile, the list of financial institutions that want to turn their backs on Russia is growing. UBS began withdrawing staff from Moscow last April.
A total withdrawal, however, is likely to be difficult. As the example of Credit Suisse showed, its Russia unit was prohibited by court order as a precautionary measure from selling its two subsidiaries there.