Eu-Swiss Agreement Free Movement of Persons

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The EU-Swiss Agreement on the Free Movement of Persons: What You Need to Know

On June 1, 2021, the EU-Swiss Agreement on the Free Movement of Persons came into effect. This agreement, which replaces the previous one signed in 1999, allows citizens of the European Union and Switzerland to move freely between the two regions for work, study, or retirement purposes.

The agreement is based on the four freedoms of the European Union: the free movement of goods, services, capital, and, of course, people. It ensures that EU citizens have the same rights as Swiss citizens when it comes to working, living, and studying in Switzerland, and vice versa.

For instance, under the agreement, EU and Swiss citizens have the right to:

– Live and work in either region without requiring a work permit

– Access social security benefits (such as healthcare, unemployment benefits, or pensions) under the same conditions as local citizens

– Study in universities and other educational institutions under the same conditions as local students

– Establish and run a business in either region under the same conditions as local entrepreneurs

Additionally, family members of EU or Swiss citizens (regardless of their nationality) also have the right to reside and work in the same region as their relative, as long as they meet certain conditions (such as having health insurance or a job offer).

Overall, the EU-Swiss Agreement on the Free Movement of Persons aims to foster closer economic and social ties between the two regions. Switzerland is not a member of the EU, but it has a close relationship with the bloc and participates in many of its policies and programs. The agreement is therefore seen as a way to strengthen this cooperation and ensure that EU and Swiss citizens have equal opportunities and rights regardless of where they live or work.

However, it`s worth noting that the agreement has been subject to some controversy and opposition in both Switzerland and the EU. Some political parties and groups have raised concerns about the impact of free movement on local job markets, wages, and social cohesion. Some have also criticized the agreement for not taking into account the issue of migration from outside the EU and Switzerland.

Nevertheless, for the majority of people living or working in either region, the EU-Swiss Agreement on the Free Movement of Persons represents an important step towards greater integration and mobility. Whether you`re an EU citizen looking to work in Switzerland, or a Swiss national hoping to study in an EU country, this agreement provides a framework of rights and opportunities that allows you to pursue your goals and aspirations to the fullest.