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Swiss to vote on abolishing millionaire tax breaks


Switzerland will hold a national vote on whether to abolish 150-year-old tax breaks for millionaire foreigners benefiting from the country's so-called forfait regime.

A petition collected more than 100,000 signatures, triggering the referendum, the federal government said in an e- mailed statement, without mentioning a schedule. Four of Switzerland's 26 cantons have already voted to scrap the expenditure-based tax system.

Under the forfait, expenditure is calculated at not less than five times the annual rental value of the individual's home in Switzerland. The Swiss Parliament voted in September to increase that to seven times annual rent by 2017 with a minimum taxable income of 400,000 Swiss francs ($A409,900).

Ordinary federal and cantonal tax rates are applied to that rental value and there is no obligation on forfait holders to declare worldwide income or assets. Unlike other Swiss residents, they don't pay tax on income from securities holdings.


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