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Strategic Financial Market Policy Road Map Presented by the Advisory Board

February 9, 2020| News

Advisory Board Presents Strategic Financial Market Policy Road Map To The Federal Council

On January 15, 2020, the advisory board presented numerous recommendations to the Federal Council as part of the financial market policy. Some of the more urgent recommendations the board brought up include establishing a crisis organization to handle cyber risks and to liberalize the Swiss Capital Market. The Confederation wants to update its financial market policy by autumn 2020.

2019 was the advisory board's last year of operation. During this period, it analyzed the financial market policy with a goal of coming up with strategic policies to help the Federal Council with a financial road map for the coming years. The first step in the road map is to identify the key factors that will influence the Swiss Financial Center's success. This road map should then advance to ten recommendations. The level of detail in each of these recommendations varies.
Switzerland has used international standards to set conditions for the development of fintech. The approach and conditions are innovation-friendly but they could be destroyed by unprofessional management of cyberattacks. Thus the advisory board recommended financial institutions and authorities to join rapidly so as to create a crisis organization responsible for fighting cyber risks. These cyber risks threaten new technologies in the financial sector which makes this recommendation urgent.
Swiss and UK trade agreement
Switzerland has a large financial sector. However, it has an underdeveloped capital market. Large companies will issue a large portion of their bonds abroad because of Switzerland's withholding tax structure. The advisory board recommended that the Federal Council should follow its own proposition to switch to a paying agent tax system. This will help develop the capital market in the country in the long term. Within a medium time estimate, withholding tax and stamp duty reforms could make the Swiss Financial Center more attractive.
The advisory board made further recommendations that highlight:
● How digital payment methods are treated
● Granting financial services market access
● Creating a research and educational hub for cybersecurity and fintech
● Stability risks surrounding low-interest rates
By Autumn 2020, the Federal Financial Department (FDF) is expected to update the financial market policy. It should present a report to highlight updates the advisory board recommends for the future of the Swiss financial center. This policy was last updated in October 2016.

The Federal Council appointed the advisory board in December 2014 and the board's obligations expired at the end of 2019. Its role was to use a strategic perspective to assess prospects and future challenges of the financial center and to provide actionable recommendations. The advisory had various members including academia, private sector, and public representatives. Professor Aymo Brunetti was the leader of this board.

Source:
1. FINMA press release https://www.efd.admin.ch/efd/en/home/dokumentation...
2. Roadmap in German https://www.newsd.admin.ch/newsd/message/attachmen...

Legal disclaimer. This article does not constitute legal advice and does not establish an attorney-client relationship. The article should be used for informational purposes only.

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