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Cabinet steers clear of EU labour quota

The government has decided against re-imposing quotas on foreigner workers from the European Union.

This content was published on May 21, 2008 - 15:03

Free access to the labour market is a key element of bilateral relations between non-EU member Switzerland and Brussels under an accord which came into force in 2002.

The Swiss economy was benefiting from the agreement, the justice ministry said in a statement on Wednesday.

However, the government reserves the right to reconsider restrictions at a later stage.

People from the old 15 EU member states, as well as Cyprus and Malta, have had unlimited access to the Swiss labour market since June 2007.

Restrictions on citizens from eight eastern European states, which joined the EU four years ago, are gradually being lifted.

Next week, parliament will debate extending the labour accord to Bulgaria and Romania.

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