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On 22 December 2016, Switzerland and the EU reached an agreement according to which a new Swiss law (in response to the referendum) would oblige Swiss employers to welcome all jobseekers (whether Swiss or non-Swiss nationals registered in Swiss employment agencies), while respecting the free movement of EU citizens in Switzerland so that they can work there. [15] The ongoing implementation of these agreements obliges Switzerland to adopt the relevant Community legislation in the sectors covered. Switzerland`s economic and trade relations with the EU are mainly governed by a series of bilateral agreements in which Switzerland has agreed to adopt certain aspects of EU legislation in exchange for access to part of the EU`s internal market. Cooperation between the EU and Switzerland is based on 120 tailor-made agreements, 25 of which can be considered the main bilateral agreements between Switzerland and the EU. At the same time, Switzerland is not in a customs union with the EU, which means that it does not have to respect the same customs duties vis-à-vis third countries. For this reason, Switzerland has been able to conclude a whole series of free trade agreements with third parties such as China and Indonesia; There is one that is being negotiated with India. In addition to the EFTA Agreement and the Free Trade Agreement with the European Union, Switzerland currently has a network of 30 free trade agreements with 40 partners outside the EU and new agreements are being negotiated. The purpose of preferential origin is to subject goods duty-free or a reduced duty on exports to a free-trade country. This is documented by a movement certificate or a country of origin declaration on invoice. Compliance with the non-preferential rules of the country of origin does not exempt goods from customs duties when they are imported into a third country – these rules of the country of origin apply only if the country of destination requires a certificate of origin for importation. This should not be confused with the issue of Swissness (“Made in Switzerland”) which is subject to another set of rules. In 2010, an agreement on Switzerland`s participation in EU programmes in the fields of education, training and youth was signed.

This justified the EU`s firm intention to update the bilateral approach through an ambitious institutional framework agreement. This agreement has not yet been concluded, as it raises some sensitive issues with regard to the level playing field and its monitoring. It may sound familiar to British ears. These bilateral agreements between the EU and Switzerland are currently managed by some twenty joint committees. In 2009, Switzerland became a participant in the Schengen area with the adoption of an Association Agreement by referendum in 2005. [13] This means that there is no passport control at Switzerland`s borders with its neighbours, although customs controls remain in force. In addition to trade in goods, other aspects, often addressed in new agreements, are the protection of intellectual property rights, trade in services, investment, government procurement and technical regulations. These are the so-called “second-generation agreements.” The seven agreements are closely linked by the obligation to enter into force simultaneously and, at the same time, six months after receipt of a notification of non-renewal or denunciation concerning one of them. [6] In the Swiss referendum on immigration in February 2014, a popular initiative of the Confederation “against mass immigration”, the Swiss people narrowly approved measures to restrict the free movement of foreign nationals in Switzerland.

The European Commission said it needed to examine the impact of the result on EU-Switzerland relations. [14] Due to Switzerland`s refusal to grant freedom of movement to Croatia, the European Union only accepted Switzerland`s access to the Erasmus+ student mobility programme as a “partner country” and not as a “programme country”, and the EU froze negotiations on access to the European electricity market. . . .