New Delhi: Curtains may soon be down on the long debated issue of blackmoney stashed in the banks of Switzerland. Giving positive hints in this regard, the Union government has indicated at the possibilities of receiving some concrete information from Switzerland by September.

Talking to reporters, Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee said sincere efforts are being made by the Union Government to trace the blackmoney deposited in foreign banks. “We have already made treaty with some countries in this regard and our efforts are likely to bring out the desired results,” he added.

Mukherjee said the Centre has contacted 86 countries to trace the blackmoney, adding “Out of which we have completed deliberations with 57 countries, and discussions are on with the remaining 29.”

He did not fail to mention that Switzerland has made a positive response to the request made by the Union Government.    

The Finance Minister said, “As the Swiss government had to make amendments in the double taxation avoidance treaty, it took them some time to approve our request.” Recently, Switzerland informed the Centre that it would share information by September.

Mukherjee claimed, “The three committees formed by Finance Ministry to trace blackmoney are working as per the expectations, and the Supreme Court directives have failed to make any impact on them.”

Denying the allegations of slowing down the pace of economic reforms, Mukherjee said, “The Centre is looking into the possibilities of raising the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in the Insurance sector from 26 percent to 49 percent.”

He assured to introduce the Pension Fund Regularity Development Authority Bill in Parliament during the forthcoming Monsoon Session. Mukherjee maintained that efforts are underway to ensure that Direct Tax Bill is approved by the Cabinet before the commencement of the Monsoon Session of Parliament.

(JPN/Bureau)