Since 2008, Switzerland has been participating in various projects designed to reduce the economic and social disparities in an enlarged EU, with CHF 1.302 billion. Switzerland’s commitment to EU enlargement is an expression of solidarity. At the same time, Switzerland is consolidating the basis on which to build solid economic and political ties with the EU and its member states.
The Swiss contribution in brief
On 26 November 2006, the Swiss population voted in favour of the Federal Act on Cooperation with the States of Eastern Europe. In doing so, they signalled their approval for financial support aimed at reducing economic and social disparities in the enlarged EU. For despite the rapid growth that characterised the years immediately following EU membership, the level of prosperity in the new EU member states is relatively low and the gap with EU-15 member states is comparably wide.
In June 2007, Parliament approved a framework credit of CHF 1 billion for the ten states that joined the EU in 2004. In December 2009, it approved a second framework credit of CHF 257 million for Bulgaria and Romania, which joined in 2007. In December 2014, Parliament approved the contribution of CHF 45 million to Croatia, which joined the EU on 1 July 2013.
The distribution of the enlargement contribution among the thirteen partner states is based on a distribution formula established on the basis of population size and per capita income. In Poland, Slovakia, the Czech Republic and Hungary, more than 40% of the project budget flows to the structurally weak regions.