EU-Swiss relations vector unchanged
The European Commission favorably received the results of the Swiss referendum on auto determination, the spokesperson said. He underlined that the vote brought clarity and indicated that Swiss will remain “reliable partner” in international relations, and those with the EU. (Image: climbing in Swiss Alps).
Swiss voters have rejected an initiative to give national laws precedence over international laws and treaties, according to results coming in from the plebiscite.
Data based on partial results indicated two thirds of voters rejected the proposal – 67% against and 33% in favour, national broadcaster SRF reported.
Critics of the imitative said the proposal would have damaged the country’s global standing, and status of an international player.
“When it comes to our favorite themes, self-determination, sovereignty, immigration, we are alone against all. In this context, this defeat is not a failure,” explains the father of the initiative on self-determination, the lawyer and Zurich national councilor Hans-Ueli Vogt.
“Contrary to the demographic pressure caused by immigration, which everyone feels every day on the train or in traffic jams on the highway, the safeguard of democracy is too abstract” – adds the president of the Swiss People’s Party (UDC), the Bernese Albert Rösti, lamenting the loss.
In 2014, the EU and Switzerland started negotiations on a common institutional framework. Such overarching “house rules” are necessary to ensure a “homogenous application of internal market law in both the EU and Switzerland” according to the European Commission. An institutional agreement would enable Switzerland to strengthen the partnership with the EU and deepen it further.
However, in spite of the vote, favorable for the relations with the EU, there are just a few Swiss enthusiasts to engage with the bloc. Foreign Minister Ignazio Cassis, in charge of the framework deal negotiations with the EU, will meet trade union and business leaders this week in a highly likely to be an unsuccessful bid to convince them to support the Swiss-EU deal, newspaper Sonntags Zeitung reported on the weekend.