EU-UK agreement ‘good news for the whole world,’ says incoming Swiss President
Share article:
Share article:

EU-UK agreement ‘good news for the whole world,’ says incoming Swiss President

© Belga

This week’s draft trade agreement between the EU and the UK is “good news for the whole world,” Switzerland’s incoming President and Economic Affairs Minister, Guy Parmelin, said on Sunday in Sonntags Zeitung newspaper.

“It is good news for the whole world that an agreement has been reached. For Switzerland too,” Parmelin, who takes over the presidency of the country on 1 January, said in the first official Swiss reaction to the accord.

However, he did not comment on what the deal could mean for current negotiations between Switzerland and the EU. “We are now waiting for the text and will analyse the whole situation,” he said.

Experts feel Switzerland’s government is under pressure to negotiate a better deal with the EU to cushion the economic effect of the British withdrawal from the Union, the newspaper commented.

London and Brussels signed their post-Brexit agreement on Thursday, after 10 months of intense negotiations and just days before the 1st of January 2021, when the UK has to withdraw from the common market after pulling out of the Union on the 1st of January 2020.

Switzerland had refused to join the EU in 1992, but voted in 2000 in favour of bilateral agreements with the Union.

In 2008, Brussels decided that no new agreement would be possible without a framework agreement setting the modalities of mainly economic ties between Switzerland and the EU. Since then, the EU has not hidden its growing impatience to reach such an agreement.

Mr. Parmelin travelled to London just before Christmas to sign an accord with Britain to facilitate mutual access for service providers to both markets. This earned him a 14-day stay in quarantine.

The Brussels Times

Latest news

Over 80,000 companies in Belgium non-compliant with anti-money laundering meassures
Over 80,000 companies and non-profits in Belgium are still not compliant with the Ultimate Business Owner (UBO) register, which is required of them ...
Increase in tax exemption for donations in Belgium fails to meet expectations
The increase from 45% to 60% in the tax exemption for donations, decided by the former federal government in June 2020, has cost Belgium more than ...
Sex workers in Belgium to get more social rights protection
The social rights of sex workers will soon be better protected in Belgium, Belga News Agency reports. The Council of Ministers has approved a draft ...
Belgian firms sent almost 266 billion euros to tax havens last year
Hundreds of Belgian firms sent close to 266 billion euros to tax havens last year, De Tijd reported on Saturday. Any Belgian individual or firm ...
Belgian investigator wins prestigious US prize
Olivier Hardy, an investigator with the federal police’s anti-terrorist unit in Brussels, DR3, received on Friday a "Top Cop" prize in Washington for ...
Pegasus Project: European Parliament awards journalism prize to investigation of use of spyware
The Daphne Caruana Prize for Journalism was awarded on Thursday to the journalists from the Pegasus Project coordinated by the Forbidden Stories ...
Belgians can now test their knowledge of driving rules and win prizes
The Walloon Road Safety Agency (AWSR) launched on Friday a quiz to allow the general public to test their knowledge of the highway code. Last year, ...
600 extras wanted for film about Belgian ‘Porn King’ and notorious Antwerp nightclub
A Belgian movie telling the story of a notorious Antwerp nightclub with connections to a Belgian 'Porn King' is looking for 600 extras at the end of ...
Namur Marathon relaunches after two years on hold
The next edition of the Namur Marathon will take place on April 24, 2022, its organisers announced on Friday, as they also opened registrations. ...
Lidl goes on strike: Half of supermarkets in Belgium closes on Saturday
One in two Lidl shops remained closed on Saturday morning, Lidl spokeswoman Isabelle Colbrandt said. Staff have been on strike for several days to ...
€220 million: Largest ever lottery prize in Europe won in France
A record-breaking €220 million Euromillions jackpot was won on Friday by a player in France, the French gaming authority (FDJ) has announced. The ...
Antwerp exhibition shows first photos after city bombed in 1944
An open-air exhibition in Antwerp will show off never before seen photos as part of a commemoration of the first V-bomb to hit the city, 77 years ...