Campaign ahead of tax vote gathers speed

Finance Minister Maurer says the initiative by the Young Socialists is unnecessary. Keystone/Peter Schneider

Opponents of a proposal to introduce a capital gains tax in Switzerland have launched their campaigns ahead of a nationwide vote on September 26.

This content was published on August 10, 2021

Finance MinisterExternal link Ueli Maurer said the initiative by the left-wing Young Socialists was creating uncertainty and undermined economic stability in Switzerland.

“It would lead to a radical re-definition of the Swiss tax system,” he told a news conference on Tuesday.

He added that the less wealthy already benefited from tax breaks and had access to the social security scheme.

In a similar vein, a committee, led by the Association of Small and Medium-sized EnterprisesExternal link, warned of the damaging impact of the initiative.

The committee is made up of representatives of the leading four centrist and right-wing parties. A majority in parliament as well as the government have come out against the proposed overhaul of the tax system.

In response to allegations, the Young SocialistsExternal link accused Maurer and the business association of turning a blind eye to growing gap between the rich and poor.

“The right-wing parties and the financial business community once again defend the privileges of the richest 1% of the population,” the group said.

The initiative wants to introduce a new tax on shares, rents and assets to fight economic inequality in society.

A first opinion poll by the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC) is due to be published next week.

The proposed tax reform is one of two issues on the ballot papers beside a proposal to allow same sex marriage in Switzerland.

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