Since 1 January 2018 all companies that provide goods or services to Switzerland and which have a worldwide turnover of at least CHF 100,000 (about US$ 100,000) are required registered for Swiss VAT.

These companies need to register with the Swiss Federal Tax authorities as soon as they begin their activities in Switzerland. In order to do this they are required to:

  • Designate a tax representative with its domicile in Switzerland. This will then become the Swiss domicile of the foreign entity.
  • Deposit a guarantee with the Swiss Federal Tax authorities (deposit of funds or a guarantee from a Swiss bank). The deposit is fixed at 3% of the estimated annual amount of sales, with a minimum of CHF 2,000 and a ceiling at CHF 250,000.

This requirement has become particularly stringent for those companies that ask to have employees seconded or working in some way in Switzerland. These companies are now required to provide a Swiss VAT number in order to receive the relevant work permits.