Press releases

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News from the Directorate for European Affairs © Fotolia

Here you will find media information on matters concerning European policy. Press releases and other information for the media from the various federal departments and offices can be accessed via the Federal Administration’s media portal.

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Object 1 – 12 of 243

Federal Council receives German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier

25.04.2018 — Media release DEA
On Wednesday, 25 April, the German president, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, arrived in Switzerland for a state visit, accompanied by his wife, Elke Büdenbender, and was greeted by the Federal Council, led by President Alain Berset. Official talks focused on bilateral relations, European policy, and cooperation between the two countries in an international context. Both sides stressed the advantages arising from their intensive cooperation.                


Federal Council agrees next steps in Switzerland–UK relations

25.04.2018 — Media release DEA
The Federal Council wishes to ensure that the existing mutual rights and obligations between Switzerland and the UK will continue to apply after the UK leaves the EU. In view of the EU-UK transition period, the Federal Council has, at its meeting on 25 April 2018,adjusted its Mind the Gap Strategy adopted in October 2016 and introduced the next steps to be taken.


Consultation on a second Swiss contribution to EU-13 countries

28.03.2018 — Media release DEA
At its meeting on 28 March 2018, the Federal Council decided to initiate the consultation procedure on a second Swiss contribution to selected EU member states. With this contribution, Switzerland aims to continue to contribute to the reduction of economic and social disparities in the EU member states. Last year, the Federal Council set two priorities for this contribution: vocational education and training and migration.


Federal Council wishes to secure jobs in long term with tax proposal 17

21.03.2018 — Media release DEA
During its meeting on 21 March 2018, the Federal Council adopted the dispatch on tax proposal 17 (TP17). It wishes to quickly improve matters for domestic and foreign companies with the proposal, also on the basis of international developments in terms of corporate taxation. TP17 will make a decisive contribution to Switzerland being a competitive location and thus to added value, jobs and tax receipts for the Confederation, cantons and communes.


Research institutes and businesses given access to European funding initiative ECSEL

09.03.2018 — Media release DEA
On 9 March the Federal Council approved the agreement on Switzerland’s participation in the European funding initiative Joint Technology Initiative Electronic Components and Systems for European Leadership (JTI ECSEL). This initiative supports transboundary research and development projects in digitalisation, developing marketable products in the fields of micro- and nanoelectronics, system integration and intelligent systems. The project costs are met by the EU and by Switzerland; research institutions receive 70 per cent of their costs, SMEs between 50 and 60 per cent, and large corporations between 30 and 35 per cent.


Relations with the EU: Federal Council takes stock and clarifies the negotiating mandate

05.03.2018 — Media release DEA
At its meeting on 2 March 2018, the Federal Council concluded the analysis it had started on 31 January and continued at its special meeting on 21 February. The object was to take stock of developments in Switzerland's relations with the European Union (EU) by reviewing the four years of negotiations on the institutional questions concerning EU market access. The Federal Council is seeking to improve these access conditions while respecting Swiss institutions and their independence. It thus set out its negotiating strategy and affirmed its commitment to proceed swiftly to ensure legal certainty for the export industry and for the stability of Switzerland's economy and our relations with the EU. The quality of the solutions put forward and the safeguarding of Swiss interests remain the criteria by which the Federal Council will determine the success of the negotiations.


Schengen/Dublin: economically and financially positive for Switzerland

22.02.2018 — Media release DEA
At its meeting on 21 February 2018, the Federal Council adopted a report on the economic and financial consequences of Schengen/Dublin. The report concludes that Switzerland's participation in Schengen/Dublin is positive both from an economic and a financial perspective: the Schengen visa system and the abandonment of systematic border controls at internal borders, making travel easier, are of great importance for the Swiss economy, especially the border regions and the tourism sector. Because of the savings made possible by Dublin in the area of asylum, Schengen/Dublin has also been positive in financial terms.


Federal Council approves 2017 Foreign Policy Report

21.02.2018 — Media release DEA
The Federal Council approved the 2017 Foreign Policy Report at its meeting on 21 February 2018. The report gives an account of Switzerland's most important foreign policy activities in 2017 in the context of international developments.


Relations with the EU: The Federal Council examines new approaches to settling disputes

31.01.2018 — Media release DEA
At its meeting on 31 January 2018, the Federal Council conducted an in-depth discussion on Swiss European policy. In particular, it discussed the current situation, the medium and long-term objectives of Swiss policy on the European Union (EU), and the way to proceed. The Federal Council would like to further develop Switzerland’s political and economic relations with the EU and for this reason is examining new approaches to settling disputes within the framework of negotiations. It is also mindful to develop solutions that find domestic support. In addition, it has appointed Roberto Balzaretti, currently head of the Directorate of International Law of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA), as head of the Directorate of European Affairs (DEA). He will take up his new duties on 1 February 2018. In this capacity he will coordinate all the different negotiations under way with the EU. To carry out this task, he has been given the title of state secretary.


New director of Directorate for European Affairs and other appointments

31.01.2018 — Media release DEA
Personnel changes will take place in 2018 at several Swiss representations abroad and at the head office of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA) in Bern, within the framework of the usual transfer rotation based on appointments made by the Federal Council. The appointment of heads of mission abroad becomes effective following approval by the respective host state.


Federal Council sets parameters for dispatch on tax proposal 17

31.01.2018 — Media release DEA
During its meeting on 31 January 2018, the Federal Council set the parameters for the dispatch on tax proposal 17. Based on the results of the consultation procedure, the Federal Council decided that the cantons' share of direct federal tax should be raised to 21.2%. The Federal Department of Finance (FDF) has been instructed to prepare the dispatch by the end of March.


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