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Swiss Federal Council brings Federal Act on Implementation of Recommendations of Global Forum into force

During its meeting on 27 September 2019, the Swiss Federal Council decided to bring into force the Federal Act on the Implementation of Recommendations of the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes (Global Forum) as per 1 November 2019.

According to the new law, bearer shares only remain permitted if the company has equity securities listed on a stock exchange or if the bearer shares are structured as intermediated securities. 18 months after entry into force, i.e. on 1 May 2021, impermissible bearer shares shall be converted into registered shares. Shares held by non-registered shareholders will become void five years after the entry into force of the act, i.e. on 1 November 2024. Shareholders or companies that fail to report beneficial owners or fail to maintain the share register and the list of beneficial owners of shares might be subject to fines.

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