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Switzerland Exempts E-Cigarettes From Tax

by Ulrika Lomas, Tax-News.com, Brussels

23 March 2012


The Swiss federal council has recently decided to exempt electronic cigarettes from tax from April 1, 2012, and has adapted the ordinance pertaining to the taxation of tobacco accordingly (OITab).

The federal council’s decision follows the adoption by the Swiss parliament of a motion seeking to exempt electronic cigarettes, which simulate the act of smoking, from tobacco tax, in December 2011. Parliament therefore instructed the federal council to abolish the tax. As a result, electronic cigarettes, or 'e-cigarettes' will no longer be considered tobacco “substitutes” and therefore subject to taxation.

According to the Swiss Federal Department of Finance (FDF), the amended ordinance provides that products aimed at stopping the tobacco habit, registered with the Swiss institute for therapeutic products (Swissmedic), will also no longer be considered tobacco substitutes, and will in future also be exempt from taxation.

Alluding to a second modification to the ordinance, the FDF explains that the tax declaration deadline is to be brought forward. Consequently, in future, manufacturers of tobacco products will be required to submit their monthly fiscal declarations to the tax administration two days earlier than is currently the case.

The changes to the ordinance are due to enter into force on April 1.

TAGS: tax | public health | legislation | Switzerland | legislation amendments

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