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Swiss vote to impose quotas on EU citizens could be damaging

Date: 11 February 2014

Following a vote by the Swiss people to impose quotas on immigrants from the EU, specialist recruiting group Phaidon International’s director for Continental Europe has warned of potentially damaging effects on the availability of talent in the country. 

In a referendum last week, 50.3% voted in favour of a proposal that will extend a quota system already in place for non-EU nationals. 

Although Switzerland is not a member of the EU, the country has agreed many trade policies in common with EU countries.

Greg Beszant, director Continental Europe at Phaidon International, tells Recruiter that were the wishes of the Swiss people to be reflected in future legislation, the fallout from the vote would be “100% damaging” for the availability of talent within Switzerland.  

“It would affect the ability of people who want to come here from countries such as Germany and the UK by making it harder for them to get a work permit,” says Beszant.

However, he adds that clients he spoke with today were not unduly concerned, because administrative and legislative hurdles must be cleared before any possible legislation is enacted.

As we reported in our January issue, EU workers are an important source of talent for many Swiss companies and it remains to be seen what effect any quotas will have on business. - See more at: