Cold snap between Switzerland and France

Published on 14 Jan. 2022 at 16: 01

By preferring to buy 36 F- combat aircraft to the American Lockheed Martin rather than the French Rafale, Bern has blurred its good understanding with Paris. A confidential note from the President of the Swiss Confederation, Ignazio Cassis, dated September and revealed by the German-speaking media, indicates that “France severed all high-level diplomatic relations” since last June.

The country lost big in this case. “With a French fighter plane, Switzerland could have bought a European partnership and billions in additional tax revenue,” notes Republik. This reveals that the two States were negotiating, in return for this military contract, “a historic agreement which would have deepened their neighborly relations in an unprecedented way”.

A tax agreement at 3.4 billion euros

It was about an agreement on the taxation of cross-border workers, collaborations in science, the fight against crime or transport infrastructure. The agreement on cross-border workers could thus have brought Switzerland 3.5 billion francs (3.4 billion euros) in tax revenue over thirty years. Moreover, Bern could have benefited from the support of Paris in its difficult negotiations with the EU on a framework agreement.

Beyond the disappointment inflicted on the European aeronautics industry, “the Federal Council’s communication in this affair failed in a catastrophic”, regrets Republik. While the choice of the F16 was recorded in mid-May, the Swiss leaders continued to negotiate intensely with France until the last moment. , accentuating the vexation. Result: “Today, Switzerland finds itself isolated in Europe as it has rarely been. »