Swiss-EU problems "must not be dramatised"

Jacques de Watteville, the Swiss ambassador to the European Union, has described current relations between Switzerland and the EU as “intensive” and “not simple”.

This content was published on December 6, 2010 minutes and agencies

Speaking to the media in Brussels on Monday, de Watteville stressed however that the problem must not be dramatised, saying “common elements are stronger than the differences”.

Switzerland is not a member of the EU but it has concluded 20 major bilateral agreements with the 27-nation bloc, and another 100 secondary accords since 1972, when voters approved an Efta (European Free Trade Association) accord with Brussels on a free trade zone.

But Brussels no longer wants to sign tailor-made agreements with Switzerland, which is being told to align itself on EU rules and regulations.

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