EU Parliament’s top group suggests blacklisting Switzerland after Credit Suisse leaks By Reuters
© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The logo of Swiss bank Credit Suisse is seen at a branch office in Zurich, Switzerland, November 3, 2021. REUTERS/Arnd WIegmann/File Photo
BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The main political grouping in the European Parliament called on Monday for a review of Switzerland’s banking practices and for the country’s possible inclusion in the EU’s dirty-money blacklist after leaks of Credit Suisse (SIX:) documents.
Media outlets published the results of investigations into a leak of data on thousands of accounts held at the bank in past decades and said they appeared to show clients included human rights abusers and businessmen under sanctions.
Credit Suisse said it strongly rejected any allegations of wrongdoing and that the media reports were based on “partial, inaccurate or selective information taken out of context”.
The European People’s Party (EPP), the conservative grouping which holds the biggest number of seats in the European Parliament, called on the EU Commission on Monday to “re-evaluate Switzerland as high-risk money-laundering country”.
“The ‘Swiss Secrets’ findings point to massive shortcomings of Swiss Banks when it comes to the prevention of money laundering,” the EPP’s coordinator on economic affairs Markus Ferber said.
“When Swiss banks fail to apply international anti-money laundering standards properly, Switzerland itself becomes a high-risk jurisdiction,” he added.
The EU list currently comprises 21 countries who are deemed to have shortfalls in their rules and practices against money laundering. Among them are Iran, Myanmar, Syria and North Korea. No European country is on the list.
Swiss authorities and the European Commission, which is responsible for drafting and reviewing the list, were not immediately available for a comment.
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