Credit Suisse has collapsed, relations with the European Union have become cold, and Switzerland’s stance on indirect arms deliveries to Ukraine has been criticized. How scratched is Switzerland’s image?
What is currently being discussed in Berne is also being closely watched from abroad: “Switzerland will take a big dent from the CS debacle,” said brand expert Stefan Vogler in the “Arena”. Above all, the accumulation of crises threatens to batter the Swiss brand. However, Switzerland has not yet lost its trust in other countries. “The image depends largely on how we deal with a crisis in our country and how we communicate,” says Vogler.
The guests in the “Arena”
Also in the studio:
- Stephen Voglerbrand consultant and lecturer at the Zurich School of Economics
Moderated by Sandro Brotz.
“Our international financial center works 99 percent excellently,” said Central Councilor Andrea Gmür. Personnel failure and years of mismanagement by the CS leadership would have led to the debacle. There was too little reaction here. “But it was catastrophic that the pole parties SVP and SP rejected the CS-UBS deal in the extraordinary session.” That is irresponsible and jeopardizes Switzerland’s credibility.
People have been asking themselves the same questions about the financial center for forty years, now we have to find the courage to regulate more strictly, replied SP National Councilor Fabian Molina. Switzerland also hesitates too long when it comes to other challenges. «Switzerland is still a safe haven for dirty money. This indirectly supports Putin’s war of aggression.” That too must come to an end.
Molina pointed to the pressure from the world’s largest economies to implement sanctions against Russia. “Rarely have the G7 written a letter to Switzerland.” In many respects, Switzerland shows no solidarity with other countries. “The Vogelstrauss strategy doesn’t get us anywhere,” says Molina.
We are implementing the Russia sanctions correctly.
Switzerland has a good reputation, FDP Councilor Damian Müller contradicted him. But when it comes to core political business, their traditions and customs are often not fully understood. So the finger is pointed at the wrong people. Because while in Switzerland billions of oligarch funds have already been blocked, France, for example, has only frozen 1.2 billion. “We are implementing the Russia sanctions correctly,” said Müller.
Another political construction site that was discussed in the “Arena” was Switzerland’s relations with the EU. Switzerland is currently in the ninth exploratory round with the EU Commission. By the end of June, the Federal Council intends to develop the benchmarks for a new negotiating mandate.
“The EU is our most important partner in terms of trade and security,” said Gmür. Switzerland must therefore send a positive signal and also make compromises. Good relationships are particularly important in research and electricity.
SVP Vice-President criticizes Federal Councilor Rösti
SVP Vice President Marcel Dettling also commented on a media release published today by the SVP. “Federal Councilor Rösti tells the opposite of National Councilor Rösti,” headlines the SVP and criticizes its Federal Council for not pointing out all the facts and consequences of the climate protection law.
“We would have liked Federal Councilor Albert Rösti to show what it means to accept the Climate Protection Act and eliminate all fossil fuels.” In particular, it leads to massively higher electricity and energy prices if you have to replace fossil energy sources.
It is clear, however, that Federal Councilor Rösti must assume the role in which he is now involved. “He has to represent the opinion of the Federal Council, and that is not one hundred percent the opinion that he previously represented as the National Council.” That is part of the Swiss system. “It distinguishes him as a Federal Councilor and shows that he has arrived in the Federal Council.”
SVP Vice-President Marcel Dettling emphasized that Switzerland must defend its values in relation to the international community. So far, the EU has always adhered to the automatic adoption of rights. “We must never agree that foreign judges decide about our rights, otherwise we will have nothing more to say in the future,” said Dettling.
Dettling does not see damage to his image. As long as Switzerland existed, pressure was exerted on it from abroad. “If Switzerland’s reputation in the EU were actually so bad, 200,000 immigrants would not have flowed into the country last year.”
Sometimes Switzerland makes itself a little worse than it actually is, said brand expert Vogler and advised: “We have to work on our self-confidence.”