NEW DELHI: India has slipped to 75th place in terms of money held by its citizens in Switzerland’s banks, while the United Kingdom remains on top.

India was placed at the 61st place last year. It used to be among top 50 countries in terms of holdings in Swiss banks till 2007.

The country was ranked highest, at the 37th place, in 2004.

As per the latest annual update on Swiss banks, released by Switzerland’s central bank (Swiss National Bank), the total money held there by foreign clients fell by nearly 4 per cent to Swiss franc (CHF) 1.42 trillion at the end of 2015.

With 1.5bn Swiss francs, Pakistan placed at 69th place

In terms of individual countries, the UK accounted for the largest chunk, at about CHF 350 billion or almost 25pc of the total foreign money with Swiss banks. The US came second with nearly CHF 196bn or about 14pc.

No other country accounted for a double-digit percentage share, while others in the top ten included West Indies, Germany, Bahamas, France, Luxembourg, Hong Kong and Panama.

India was ranked 75th with CHF 1.2bn, which is not even 0.1pc of the total foreign money parked in Swiss banks and is the lowest for the country in at least two decades or since 1996 — the first year for which full comparable data is available.

Pakistan was placed higher, at the 69th place, with CHF 1.5bn — a shade better than 0.1pc of total foreign money parked in Swiss banks.

India was also lowest ranked among the BRICS nations — Russia was ranked 17th (CHF 17.6bn), China 28th (CHF 7.4bn), Brazil 37th (CHF 4.8bn) and South Africa 60th (CHF 2.2bn).

Other countries that ranked higher than India included Mauritius, Kazakhstan, Iran, Chile, Angola, Philippines, Indonesia and Mexico, while a number of so-called tax havens were also placed above, including Jersey, Cayman Islands, Cyprus, Marshall Islands, Bermuda, Belize, Gibraltar, Isle of Man, Seychelles and St Vincent and the Grenadines.

All offshore financial centres together held CHF 378bn in Swiss banks. The total for developing countries stood at CHF 207bn, while the same for the developed countries was much higher.

India was ranked in top 50 countries between 1996 and 2007, but started declining after that — 55th in 2008, 59th in 2009 and 2010 each, 55th again in 2011, 71st in 2012 and then 58th in 2013.

By arrangement with the Times of India

Published in Dawn, July 4th, 2016