Swiss citizens, called last September 25 to vote on four federal topics, decided to approve two substantial changes affecting the OASI (“AVS”). In addition to choosing an increase in the retirement age for women from 64 to 65 – thereby equalizing it with that of men – it was approved the federal decree to increase the Value Added Tax. The purpose is an additional financing of OASI, Old Age and Survivors Insurance funds.
The approvals amounted to 55 percent of the votes. A double majority of the people and cantons was needed, since it was a constitutional amendment. Only five cantons, all French-speaking (Vaud, Fribourg, Neuchâtel, Jura and Geneva), opposed the resolution.
The standard rate will increase by 0.4 percent, from the current 7.7 to 8.1 percent. In contrast, the reduced rate will rise only off 0.1 percent, hence going from 2.5 to 2.6 percent. Similarly, the special one for services in the hotel sector will rise from 3.7 to 3.8 percent.
The increases are scheduled to take effect on January 1, 2024. The Federal Council is expected to rule on the matter in December.
Citizens called to vote on 4 federal topics (in addition to the two referendums on “OASI 21” there was also the question on intensive livestock farming) also rejected the partial abolition of the withholding tax on interest on Swiss bonds issued from January 1, 2023.
The Netherlands has decided to speed up the process of the introduction of a beneficial ownership register for trusts, which will be introduced in the Country as of 1 November 2022.
This is a new register, separate from the others, which will be added to the already active ‘UBO-register for Dutch corporate entities and other legal entities’ kept by the Dutch Chamber of Commerce.
According to the new regulation, Trustees or similar legal arrangements will have three months to register to the Dutch UBO along with their beneficial owners. The transition period therefore ends per 1 February 2023.
New trusts will need to register within one week from creation. After the first registration, changes will need to be registered within the same time-frame.
The implementation of this new Trust register is one of the measures included in the fourth EU AML Directive, aiming to prevent the misuse of the financial system which would favour criminal activities such as fraud, terrorist financing or money laundering.
In particular, following the Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) guidelines, Dutch authorities adopeted a FATF’s report published in June 2022 in a plenary meeting called “Antimoney laundering and counter terrorist financing (AML/CTF) measures in the Nederlands – Fourth round mutual evolution with key priority actions” (you’ll find the complete report at this link: https://www.fatf-gafi.org/publications/mutualevaluations/documents/mer-netherlands-2022.html)
Registration is mandatory for trusts and similar legal arrangements if the trustee resides, or is established, in the Netherlands.
What if the trustee is not an EU resident?
The Ministry of Finance explains that if the trust resides outside the European Union, registration is mandatory if the trust enters into a business relationship with in the Netherlands or has acquired Dutch real estate.
How does it work?
Responsibility to register is on the trustee (or whomever covers a similar position for a similar legal arrangement).
After registration, a unique reference code will be assigned. Afterwards, The trustee must disclose this number on all documents (letters, declarations or any other written statements) issued by the trust, even if it has no direct connection with the Netherlands.
The Trust register will be kept as a separate register by the Dutch Chamber of Commerce and has its own website within the Dutch Ministry of Finance portal at this link https://www.uboregistertrusts.nl/.
What details of the trust will be registered?
1) Name and type of the trust or fund;
2) Date and place of its establishment;
3) Its purpose.
Regarding the UBOs, the following information will be public:
2) month and year of birth,
3) Country of residence and nationality,
4) Percentage in the trust or fund by category.
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