NESTLÉ, the world’s biggest food company, has warned that it could pull out of its home base in Switzerland if the government’s proposal to cap top salaries is approved.<br /><br />Group chairman Peter Brabeck-Letmathe yesterday said: “It would be the beginning of an end,” and said that if the move succeeded: “We must ask ourselves whether Switzerland is still the right location for us.” Brabeck-Letmathe received a 13.9m Sw Fr (£8.06m) total salary, including bonuses, for 2008. <br /><br />The global economic crisis and mounting public uproar against excessive pay for executives has meant the Swiss Federal Council, has been studying measures to cap “abusive” pay. <br /><br />But Brabeck-Letmathe said that to cave to “populist pressure” would be “damaging for the location”. “Switzerland was once known for not ceding to such demands.” A recent landmark settlement with USauthorities saw Swiss bank UBS agree to name the identities of 4,450 US clients. Many feel it means the end of Swiss banking secrecy.<br /><br />A Nestlé spokesman told City A.M. that the group would be considering all options.