The lower house of the Swiss Parliament voted Tuesday to approve a deal signed by the Swiss and U.S. tax authorities last year to disclose the identities of up to 4,450 U.S.-based taxpayers who have secret bank accounts at UBS.
The lower house had voted against the deal just last week (see Swiss Lower House Rejects UBS Deal). A week earlier, the upper house of Switzerlands Parliament voted in favor of the deal, but the two houses are not yet in complete agreement. The lower house wants a national voter referendum on the deal, while the upper house opposes a referendum, as it would push the handover of information beyond the August deadline in the original deal. The matter will now go back to both houses for another vote on Wednesday. Friday is the final day of the legislative session.
The lower house reportedly voted Tuesday 81 to 61, with 53 abstentions, to approve the deal signed by the U.S. and Swiss governments last August. A Swiss court had rejected the deal, ruling that it violated Swiss bank secrecy laws and needed the approval of the Swiss Parliament.
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