Federal Council’s package approach
Switzerland is seeking to further develop its relations with the EU. The Federal Council therefore developed and adopted new proposals for solutions in the form of the package approach in February 2022:
- Instead of regulating institutional issues in an agreement that provides the framework for other agreements (horizontal approach), these issues are to be resolved individually in each agreement (sectoral approach).
- Instead of one agreement, an entire package of agreements should be discussed, providing a more balanced solution overall. This allows for a broad balance of interests and increases the chances of success of any negotiations.
Switzerland would like to participate in EU programmes and be able to conclude new agreements, for example on electricity, on food safety and on health.
In individual agreements, Switzerland needs exceptions and safeguard clauses in order to be able to protect its essential interests. In the case of the free movement of persons, it must be ensured that further developments in EU law do not lead to immigration into the social system, that wage and working conditions are not undermined and that constitutionality is guaranteed.
The demand for exceptions stems from the fact that Switzerland is not a member of the EU and therefore neither demands the same rights nor has the same obligations as an EU member state. Switzerland seeks to achieve – while preserving its political autonomy – broad-based participation in the EU's single market.