The new measure restores the principle of preference for domestic versus foreign worker.
The Swiss citizens decided in a referendum to limit the entry of citizens from countries of the European Union (EU) to its labor market. The referendum established a set of annual quotas to be implemented within three years.
The official results of all Swiss counties, except Zurich, where final counting is still being completed- indicate that the initiative “Against mass migration” has been accepted with 50.4% of votes.
The initiative presented by the Democratic Union of the Centre ( UDC ), also restores the principle of preference for domestic versus foreign workers, which was abolished for all workers from any of the countries of the European Union.
This result will inevitably mean a renegotiation between Switzerland and the EU on the free movement of persons, in force since 2002, which was also approved in a referendum two years earlier.
The question asked in the last few hours by all political commentators and representatives is what will be the reaction from Brussels as well as whether or not it will be necessary to renegotiate the entire package of agreements governing its relations with Switzerland.
This would involve not only changes in migration, but also in economic, trade and political relations in general between the Swiss Confederation and the European bloc.
The free movement of people is part of a package of bilateral agreements which are legally bounding, so if one falls, the set expires, under the so-called ” guillotine clause ” which several politicians fear that the EU can decide to apply. The impact on the Swiss economy and the job market can be very negative, some analysts have said.
During the referendum campaign, the UDC said that immigration was causing an unsustainable population growth and creating problems such as rising unemployment, particularly in border regions. It also accused the immigrants of the increase in real estate prices, the overloading of trains, traffic problems on the roads, as well as unfair wages.
Luis R. Miranda is the Founder and Editor of The Real Agenda. His 16 years of experience in Journalism include television, radio, print and Internet news. Luis obtained his Journalism degree from Universidad Latina de Costa Rica, where he graduated in Mass Media Communication in 1998. He also holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Broadcasting from Montclair State University in New Jersey. Among his most distinguished interviews are: Costa Rican President Jose Maria Figueres and James Hansen from NASA Space Goddard Institute. Read more about Luis.