Legal and political developments in Switzerland
- With respect to the issue of corporate taxation, we have noted in Week 1 that, in 2014, the European Union (EU) and Switzerland signed a Memorandum of Understanding formally declaring an end to the EU–Swiss dispute on corporate taxation. This statement concerns the dispute as such, which is now deemed to have come to an end. Note that the EU and Switzerland never reached the point where they agreed on whether or not there was indeed an infringement of the Free Trade Agreement. Rather, Switzerland agreed to change its rules in view of changed Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) standards.
- Turning to the issue of Banking Secrecy, we heard, also in Week 1, that the new rules in the renamed Agreement on the automatic exchange of financial account information should lead to a first exchange of information in 2018. Signed in 2015 and since ratified by the parties, the agreement entered into force on 1 January 2017.
- With respect to the vote of 9 February 2014 on curbing migration, we heard that the Federal Parliament decided not to follow the approach suggested by the Federal Council but to take rather different steps instead in order to tackle unemployment in Switzerland. This was essentially accepted by the EU as not breaching the Free Movement of Persons Agreement.
- Regarding the institutional issues, the Swiss Federal Government in December 2018 presented the draft text as it had resulted in the negotiations so far and then held consultations. At the time of writing, it remains to be seen what will be the Government’s next step.
Further readingSee how the Federal Administration published the letter of the Federal Council informing the EU about the withdrawal of the 1992 request by Switzerland for membership talks without any further comment: Swiss Federal Administration Press Release of 27 July 2016 Withdrawal of Switzerland’s membership application for the EU
Switzerland in Europe: Money, Migration and Other Difficult Matters
Our purpose is to transform access to education.
We offer a diverse selection of courses from leading universities and cultural institutions from around the world. These are delivered one step at a time, and are accessible on mobile, tablet and desktop, so you can fit learning around your life.
We believe learning should be an enjoyable, social experience, so our courses offer the opportunity to discuss what you’re learning with others as you go, helping you make fresh discoveries and form new ideas.
You can unlock new opportunities with unlimited access to hundreds of online short courses for a year by subscribing to our Unlimited package. Build your knowledge with top universities and organisations.