Expert Insights

Expert Insights

Switzerland is removed from the EU tax grey list

Having been on the grey list of tax havens for almost two years, Switzerland has finally been removed from the said list.

To recap, in December 2017 the EU had placed Switzerland on the "grey list", which includes co-operative jurisdictions who are subject to the successful delivery of their commitments in tax matters. Switzerland had been placed on this list due to the existence of special corporate tax regimes. The country had one year to enforce a tax reform.

After the rejection of the Swiss corporate tax reform in February 2017, there had been fears that the country would be black-listed involving several sanctions from the EU.

On 12 March 2019, the revised black and grey lists were published and new jurisdictions were included, such as the UAE which has been moved from the grey to the black list. Switzerland remained on the grey list.

However, on 19 May 2019, Swiss voters approved the corporate tax reform comprising of the abolition of its special tax regimes for corporations which will enter into force on January 2020. Following this approval, Ueli Maurer, President of the Swiss Confederation, had requested the removal of Switzerland from the grey list based on the fact that Switzerland had delivered on its commitments to change its tax rules to make them compliant with the EU requirements.

Last September, after a few months of reflexion, the European Union finance ministers have finally announced they are set to remove Switzerland from the grey list. The EU ambassadors have also confirmed this recommendation.

On Thursday 10 October, EU finance ministers formally announced the removal of Switzerland from the grey list.


This article was written by Laure Cordt-Møller. For more information please contact Laure on +41 (0)22 591 18 90 or

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