European policy: current state of negotiations on the institutional issues and next steps

Press releases, 04.07.2018

At its meeting on 4 July 2018 the Federal Council took note of the technical progress on institutional negotiations with the European Union (EU). On the basis of the existing negotiating mandate, it instructed the negotiating delegation to continue the discussions with the EU with a view to reaching agreement on the institutional issues.

Press conference of the Federal Council on European policy
Press conference of the Federal Council on European policy © DEA

On 2 March 2018 the Federal Council clarified the negotiating mandate of 18 December 2013 in regard to the institutional issues so as to be able to reach agreement with the EU. Since then, five rounds of negotiations have taken place on drafting an institutional agreement, and three meetings have been held between Switzerland and the EU at chief-coordinator level. 

On 4 July 2018 the Federal Council took note of the technical progress made in these negotiations. A consensus is emerging in the area of dispute settlement on the basis of an arbitration solution.

The Federal Council also discussed the outstanding issues regarding the free movement of persons and in this respect reaffirmed the existing red lines.

In this regard, the EAER, in collaboration with the FDFA and the FDJP, will seek the opinion of the social partners and the cantons in the summer.  

State aid and MiFIR 23
Concerning state aid, the Federal Council reiterated its openness to a solution that foresees the inclusion of non-justiciable provisions in the institutional agreement, while the binding material provisions are to be negotiated as part of a future market access agreement, such as the agreement on access to the single market for electricity. The negotiations on this agreement were also discussed during the meeting.

The Federal Council reiterates its stance that Switzerland fulfils all the conditions for the EU to recognise the equivalence of its stock market regulation for an unlimited period of time. It calls upon the EU to recognise unlimited equivalence of Swiss stock market regulation under MiFIR 23.

Next step
The Federal Council will again take stock of the situation after the summer on the basis of the outcome of the various discussions.

Address for enquiries:

FDFA Information
Tel. +41 58 462 31 53

State Secretariat for Economic Affairs

Information Service FDJP
Tel: +41 58 462 18 18


The Federal Council
Federal Department of Foreign Affairs