Most Swiss agreements are concluded under the European Free Trade Association (EFTA). In addition, Switzerland also has the right to negotiate free trade agreements without efTA participation, as has been the case, for example, with China, Japan and the Faroe Islands. Beyond the recently signed apprenticeship agreement, the shared values of the United States and Switzerland make the two countries natural and forward-looking economic partners. The continuation of a free trade agreement between the United States and Switzerland would be a strategic opening point and would be a pragmatic element in promoting the government`s trade agenda to promote “a fairer and more efficient global economy.” The manufacture of products in the Country of Origin in Switzerland should not be subject to the use of primary materials that do not meet the criteria of the country of origin which are subject to restitution or suspension of customs duties (for example. B, goods imported and re-exported to the processing facility). This rule does not apply to agreements with Singapore, South Korea, SACU, Canada, Japan, Colombia and Peru. Free trade agreements are the stated objective of the U.S. government. It continues to work for cooperation with like-minded countries to promote fair competition in the market, and its official trade agenda states that these nations will find “a true friend and ally” in the administration. However, the United States has not yet reached an agreement with the European Union (EU) and the trade dispute with China is intensifying. For its part, Switzerland is feeling the effects, as the World Trade Organization is losing its importance: multilateral trade liberalization has slowed considerably and an agreement with the country`s largest trading partner, the EU, is at stake. “The signs of an agreement between the United States and Switzerland are better than in a long time,” says Patrick Dummler, senior fellow and co-author of the new Study Avenir Suisse. Switzerland and the United States are “sister republics” and share the same values in terms of the rule of law, freedom, democracy and the free market.
The political and administrative intensification of trade between Switzerland and the United States would be an excellent opportunity to begin formal negotiations for a free trade agreement. “It`s time to make a deal,” says Peter Gronenfelder, Director of the Swiss Future. 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.