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Free movement of persons

The Bilateral Agreement on the free movement of persons (FMP) confers upon the citizens of Switzerland and of the member states of the European Union (EU) the right to freely choose their place of employment and residence within the national territories of the contracting states parties. This is conditional, however, on possession by the individuals concerned of a valid employment contract, being self-employed, or in the case of their not being in gainful employment, proof of financial independence and full health insurance coverage. The FMP provides for a phased introduction of the ground rules for the free movement of persons between Switzerland and the EU. It lays down transitional periods during which immigration can be restricted. With the implementation of the popular initiative «Against mass immigration», the FMP will have to be revised.
Map of Free movement of persons between Switzerland and European Union
Free movement of persons between Switzerland and European Union
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Chronology 

  • 1.7.2014: introduction of separate quotas for Croatian citizens by means of an ordinance governing the admission of third country nationals to the Swiss labour market and recognition of certain Croatian professional diplomas
  • 20.6.2014: decision of the Federal Council on the implementation concept for the initiative «Against mass immigration»
  • 1.6.2014: continuation of labor market restrictions for Bulgaria/Romania
  • 1.6.2014: free movement of persons for EU-25 after expiration of the safeguard clause.
  • 9.2.2014: acceptance of the popular initiative «Against mass immigration»
  • 24.4.2013: invocation of the safeguard clause against the 17 other EU member states for one year
  • 24.4.2013: prolongation of the safeguard clause against the EU-8 for one additional year
  • 1.6.2009: entry into force of FMP Protocol II
  • 8.2.2009: approval by the people (59.6% in favour)
  • 13.6.2008: approval of the continuation of the FMP and Protocol II by Parliament (Bulgaria, Romania)
  • 1.4.2006: entry into force of FMP Protocol I
  • 25.9.2005: approval of FMP Protocol I by the electorate (56% in favour)
  • 26.10.2004: signing of FMP Protocol I (for countries that joined the EU in 2004)
  • 1.6.2002: entry into force of the Agreement
  • 21.5.2000: approval by the people (67.2% in favour)
  • 21.6.1999: signing of the Agreement (in the framework of Bilateral Agreements I)

Status August 2014

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Dossier

Implementation of the new constitutional provisions on immigration

Documentation

Further information

Type: PDF

16.02.2012 | 229 kb | PDF

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Directorate for European Affairs DEA
Contact | Legal framework
http://www.europa.admin.ch/themen/00500/00506/00519/index.html?lang=en