When it comes to foreign and security policy, Switzerland and the EU do not have comprehensive agreements. But in its 2000 Security Report, the Federal Council announced the importance of contributing to stability and peace beyond Switzerland`s borders and building an international community of values. Switzerland then began cooperating on projects under the EU`s Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP). Switzerland has brought personnel or equipment to EU peacekeeping and security missions in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Kosovo, Macedonia and Aceh in Indonesia. In addition to the EFTA agreement and the 1972 free trade agreement with the European Union (EU), Switzerland currently has a network of 31 free trade agreements (FTAs) with 41 partners. Switzerland generally concludes its free trade agreements with its partners, Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein, under the European Free Trade Association (EFTA). Nevertheless, Switzerland has the opportunity to conclude free trade agreements outside the EFTA framework, as has been the case with Japan and China. Most (but not all) Swiss free trade agreements contain such a rule. This means that the determination of the country of origin of primary materials from a third country is not taken into account, provided that their value does not exceed 10% of the factory starting price. However, if a percentage rule is established in the list, it cannot be exceeded by the application of the general value tolerance. This is why this tolerance is particularly important for products for which the list provides for a jump in position. The general value tolerance cannot apply to products listed in Chapters 50 to 63 of the harmonized system, nor does it apply to products that have received only minimal processing in Switzerland. Updated page to provide detailed instructions on trade with Switzerland from 1 January 2021.
These include information on import duties and rules of origin. You can use online tools that trade with the UK and check how you can export goods to check product and country-specific information on tariffs and current rules for trading goods in the UK. These tools are regularly updated to reflect changes. See the list of minimum transactions in Article 7 of the Origin Protocol in the text of the UK-Switzerland trade agreement. In summary, this so-called “bilateral” approach works well for both parties and in particular allows for a fluid trade relationship. These relationships can be problematic. Switzerland and the EU are currently working on issues related to cross-border services and wage protection (the so-called eight-day rule). These guidelines contain information on aspects of trade that will change as soon as the agreement between the United Kingdom and Switzerland comes into force.