Safeguard Clause Extended for Twelve Additional Months
April 19, 2018
What has changed
On April 18, 2018, Switzerland's Federal Council announced that the safeguard clause contained in the Agreement on the Free Movement of Persons and invoked in May of
2017 will continue to apply for Romania and Bulgaria (EU-2 states). As of June 1, 2018, the Swiss government plans to enforce quotas on both categories B and L work permits for persons from EU-2 (until June 2018, only B permits are subject to quotas) if the maximum numbers of L permits for EU-2 states have been reached by the May 31, 2018.
Who is affected
Swiss-based employers who wish to hire Bulgarian and Romanian citizens who still do not yet have a Swiss permit.
What to expect
Since June 1, 2016, EU-2 citizens have fully benefited from the Agreement on the Free Movement of Persons concluded between Switzerland and the European Union (EU); however, since June 1, 2017, quotas have been applied to B-permits (five (5) year permits) for workers from EU-2 states (i.e. EU-2 states are subject to quotas when applying for B-permits from June 1, 2017). The quota units for B permits should remain the same (996); quotas are usually released on a trimestral basis. The quota units for L permits will be confirmed at the appropriate time should the maximum numbers be reached by the end of May and the safeguard clause will also be applied to L permits. Maintaining the safeguard clause is a continuation of the decisions made over the last few years by the Federal Council to manage immigration more effectively and make better use of the local workforce. Among these measures, the obligation to communicate vacancies in groups of occupations with an unemployment rate above 8% will come into effect on July 1, 2018.

For more information on this, please see our immigration alert from January 25, 2018. Emigra will follow up with a new alert when the decision regarding L permits has been made.
What you need to do
  • Advise clients to submit permit applications for EU-2 citizens as far in advance as possible of the start date and as early as possible at the beginning of each trimester.
  • Contact your Emigra Worldwide representative for further details on how these updates may impact you or your client.       
Stay connected
Thumbs up or like symbol in coffee froth
Emigra Worldwide can be found on LinkedIn . We use this channel to share immigration news and alerts, relevant industry news and updates, information about Emigra Worldwide, and details about upcoming company webinars. We hope you'll follow us.