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State Secretary Martina Hirayama attended the informal meeting of ministers responsible for research and innovation from the EU member states in Prague (Czech Republic) on 21 and 22 July. The event, which takes place twice a year, focused on two different policy debates, namely synergies in the funding of research and innovation in Europe, and possible measures in the area of research and innovation in response to Russia's military aggression in Ukraine. State Secretary Hirayama also held bilateral talks with the representatives from Romania, Finland, Norway and Lithuania.
On 19 July, Martina Hirayama, State Secretary for Education, Research and Innovation, held official talks in Athens with the Minister for Development and Investment, Adonis Georgiadis, and with the Minister for Education and Religious Affairs, Niki Kerameus. She also visited the excavation site of the Swiss School of Archaeology in Greece (ESAG), which has received federal support since 2008.
Die Auswirkungen der Covid-Krise auf den Arbeitsmarkt sind weitgehend überwunden. Der Wiederaufschwung hat in verschiedenen Wirtschaftszweigen Arbeitskräfteengpässe nach sich gezogen. Die Zuwanderung von Arbeitskräften aus dem Ausland hilft mit, diese zu entschärfen. Die Personenfreizügigkeit bleibt zur bedarfsgerechten Deckung der Arbeitskräftenachfrage wichtig, wie der diesjährige Bericht des Observatoriums zum Freizügigkeitsabkommen unter anderem am Beispiel des Berufsfelds der IT zeigt.
Switzerland and the EU signed earlier today in Brussels a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on the second Swiss contribution to selected EU member states. State Secretary Livia Leu, who was in Brussels for exploratory talks, signed the MoU on behalf of Switzerland. The signing of this MOU marks another important milestone towards a swift implementation of the contribution.
On 28 June, Martina Hirayama, State Secretary for Education, Research and Innovation, opened the SwissCore Annual Event in Brussels. During her visit, the State Secretary also held talks with Flemish Minister Jo Brouns and representatives of the Faroe Islands.
Martina Hirayama, State Secretary for Education, Research and Innovation, attended the Eureka Ministerial Conference in Lisbon (Portugal) on 22 June. Eureka is an initiative of 47 countries aimed at fostering cross-border cooperation projects in market-oriented research and development independent of the EU’s framework programmes. State Secretary Hirayama also took the opportunity to talk with German education minister Bettina Stark-Watzinger, UK science minister George Freeman and South Korean deputy trade minister Soosung Hwang.
In order to implement the OECD/G20 project on taxing the digital economy, the Federal Council is proposing a supplementary tax. Based on the results of the consultation, the Confederation should receive 25% of the receipts from the supplementary tax and use the funds for the benefit of Switzerland as a business location. The remaining 75% will go to the cantons and communes.
During his visit to Stuttgart, the President of the Confederation met with the Minister-President of the German state of Baden-Württemberg, Winfried Kretschmann. The meeting focused on Switzerland's relations with the European Union and their impact on close cross-border relations between Switzerland and Baden-Württemberg. The war in Ukraine was also discussed.
Die Staatssekretärin für Wirtschaft Marie-Gabrielle Ineichen-Fleisch wird am 20. Juni 2022 an der Ministerkonferenz der Europäischen Freihandelsassoziation (EFTA) in Island teilnehmen. Hauptgesprächsthemen auf Ministerebene sind aktuelle und zukünftige Freihandelsprozesse sowie die militärische Aggression Russlands in der Ukraine, die seit Langem ein Freihandelspartner der EFTA ist.
At its European policy retreat on 17 June 2022, the Federal Council was briefed on the status of the exploratory talks between Switzerland and the EU. The Federal Council decided on this basis to step up the exploratory talks with the EU. It also took note of the final report on the removal of regulatory differences between Swiss and EU law. The scope for action and possible solutions identified in the final report will be taken into consideration in further exploratory talks with the EU.
On Thursday, 19 May, President Zuzana Čaputová became the first head of state of the Slovak Republic to pay a State Visit to Switzerland. The Swiss government, headed by President Ignazio Cassis, welcomed the Slovak president at the start of the visit on Bundesplatz in Bern. Besides bilateral relations, official talks focused in particular on the war in Ukraine. Other topics on the agenda included European policy and climate and environmental issues.
President Zuzana Čaputová of Slovakia will pay a state visit to Switzerland next week. Switzerland and the Slovak Republic share many similarities and enjoy a close relationship. President Čaputová is the first Slovak head of state to visit Switzerland and will be received with full military honours. The Federal Council hopes that the visit will further strengthen ties between the two countries.