For legal entities, the canton with the lowest taxation at its capital city is Zug, with a rate of 11.82%.
At the other end of the scale, canton of Berne’s capital city shows a corporate tax rate of 21.04% in 2023 – almost twice as high. There are some major differences in corporate tax rates between cantons, based on where a company has its registered office and effective place of management.
Switzerland’s low-tax cantons rank alongside the lowest-tax EU countries. The high-tax cantons in Switzerland, which levy taxes at rates almost twice as high, are mid-table in an international comparison.
Switzerland’s low-tax cantons rank alongside the lowest-taxed OECD/G20 countries. The high-tax cantons in Switzerland, which levy rates almost twice as high, are only mid-table in an international comparison.
Income tax rates vary considerably within Switzerland, not just from canton to canton, but also from municipality to municipality.
Taxable income CHF 100,000
This overview shows the tax burden in the cantonal capitals. The figures relate to a taxable income of CHF 100,000. In this scenario the canton of Zug, or more precisely the city of Zug, has the lowest tax rate at 11.80%. Bringing up the rear is the city of Basel, (Basel-Stadt) with a tax rate more than twice as high (24.55%).
Taxable income CHF 250,000
The interactive map above shows tax rates in the cantonal capitals. The figures refer to a taxable income of CHF 250,000. The city of Zug once again tops the rankings in this scenario, with an attractive tax rate of 18.69%. The city of Basel (Basel-Stadt), however, is no longer in last position, which goes to the city of Lausanne with an income tax rate of 35.32%.
Marginal tax rate
This map shows the tax rates in the cantonal capitals. The figures refer to the maximum marginal tax rate. At the bottom of the list is the city of Geneva, where the tax rate of 45.0% is more than twice as high as in Zug.
Depending on the level of taxable income, it makes sense to compare not only the various cantons and their cantonal capitals, but also individual municipalities in different cantons. So even though the city of Zug offers the lowest marginal tax rate of any cantonal capital, an even lower tax rate of 20.38% can be achieved in the canton of Schwyz, for example in the municipality of Freienbach.
For further information, please download our brochure "PwC's tax comparison".
Partner, International Tax Services, Leader China Business Group, PwC Switzerland
Tel: +41 58 792 44 82
Partner, International Tax Services and Leader Tax Policy , PwC Switzerland
Tel: +41 58 792 45 55
Managing Director, Private Clients – Executive Advisory, PwC Switzerland
Tel: +41 58 792 42 48