Describes how important the financial sector is in Switzerland, contributing 14% to GDP, while Swiss banks have around 33% of the international asset management market; this makes the country highly exposed to instabilities and to misuse of financial institutions by terrorists. Outlines the nature of the banking secrecy that is central to Swiss banking, and its relationship to money laundering control. Shows how Switzerland is contributing to the international effort against tax fraud; it advocates a system of moderate taxation that is efficiently operated and includes severe penalties for fiscal crime, plus a withholding tax on capital income, but it does not support state supervision of all financial transactions. Indicates how the country is negotiating with the Organisation for Economic Development and the European Union over access to bank information and other tax issues.
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