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2019: a financial year allowing us to look forward with confidence

The City of Geneva’s accounts for 2019 displayed a positive result of 2.1 million francs after allocating 35.4 million to the economic reserve. Investments reached record levels. Nevertheless, the sound economic management of recent years enables us to face an uncertain financial future with a healthy dose of confidence.

Sound revenue

The tax revenues collected by the cantonal tax administration accounted for 76.0% of the City of Geneva’s operating income (tax from natural persons 49.7%, tax from legal entities 17.4% and corporate tax 8.8%). Financial revenues accounted for 13.2% of this income and were primarily related to products from the property of financial assets (rent, car parks, etc.), totalling 85.4 million francs. While tax income relating to natural persons (+56.5 million) and legal entities (+10.1 million) was higher than expected, the change in the accounting method for the withholding tax levied on natural persons affected the result for 2019, with an extraordinary negative impact of 59.3 million.

Net expenses in line with the budget

The net operating expenses reached a total of 1,158.1 million. Staff salaries accounted for 41.9% of this total, while transfer costs (primarily comprising subsidies) represented 29.0% and goods, services and other operating expenses accounted for 14.8%. Ultimately, net expenses for 2019 were slightly higher than budgeted (+6.7 million).

Record investments

In 2019, net investments totalled 180.1 million, some 38.5% higher than the budgeted figure of 130 million. The largest investments were the developments around the new CEVA stations in Eaux-Vives and Champel (25.3 million), the renovation of the Minoteries complex (25.0 million), the construction of la Nouvelle Comédie (14.0 million) and completion of the renovation of the Grand Théâtre (10.1 million). Total investments over the past ten years have now reached 1.3 billion francs. The high volume of loans approved by the Municipal Council in previous years has led to annual expenses that have been higher than average since 2017.

Sensible management

In accordance with the Municipal Council’s wishes and in order to pre-empt the budget deficits forecast for the period 2020-2024, not only in the wake of the enactment of the TRAF but also due to the probable consequences of the current health crisis, the economic reserve was increased by 35.4 million francs to stand at its current level of 140 million. Since the arrival of Sandrine Salerno in 2007 at the head of the City of Geneva’s finances, the aggregate results recorded now total 752.9 million francs. The Mayor, who is presenting the accounts for the last time, sounds the reassuring note that, “despite the uncertainty of the current situation, the City enjoys sound management enabling us to look forwards with confidence.”


Valentina Wenger-Andreoli

Conseillère personnelle

Département des finances et du logement

5, rue de l'Hôtel-de-Ville




Tél. +41224182235

Por. +41795082434


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Article modifié le 13.05.2020 à 14:04