This unilateral approach opens the door to exceptions and allows for individual solutions in areas of vital interest to Switzerland. Overall, this ensures a level playing field for the Swiss economy in a wide range of the internal market, applying the entire trading system on the same basis. These figures speak for themselves: customs facilities work very well, as their legal basis is the customs agreement with the EU and numerous bilateral technical agreements with the EU`s four neighbouring Member States, which facilitate border control of goods. “WTO law is the basis of international trade relations,” says Livia Willi, spokeswoman for the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO). “However, the WTO agreements do not grant Switzerland preferential treatment such as preferential rates or preferential access to the EU`s internal market.” “Market access is guaranteed by the free trade agreement [signed between the EU and Switzerland, signed in 1972] and by the agreements with the World Trade Organization (WTO),” reads its campaign website. Bilateral agreements I are interdependent. If one of them is denounced or not renewed, they all stop applying. According to the preamble to the EU ratification decision, the concessions made by China under the ALER on financial and insurance services – another important interest of Switzerland and the EU – are low. In the insurance sector, there is no additional concession to China`s accession protocol, although the provision of activities authorized by Chinese subsidiaries by Swiss companies is more concrete.
With regard to financial services, the additional concessions apply only to securities trading allowing Swiss companies to act in China on behalf of qualified institutional investors (QDII), to provide advisory services and custodial services abroad. Swiss companies can also own 49 per cent of joint ventures that carry out certain commercial and underwriting activities. As part of their OBLIGATIONS under the NFC, the maximum permitted share of ownership of these joint ventures is 33%. Swiss joint ventures are also allowed to carry out intermediation, trading on own account and asset management if they obtain the necessary authorisation. In 2009, the Swiss voted 59.6% and 40.4% against the extension of Bulgaria and Romania.  While Directive 2004/38/EC on the right to free movement and residence does not apply directly to Switzerland, the bilateral Swiss-EU agreement on the free movement of persons provides for the same rights for both Swiss nationals and EEA nationals and their family members.  Free trade agreements are international agreements concluded between two parties (countries or transnational groups) in order to guarantee free trade. But for Switzerland, business with the EU today is not limited to the export of goods. The EU, for example, is by far its main trading partner in services, which is notably covered by the 1999 agreement on the free movement of persons.
Firstly, the free trade agreement, the agricultural agreement and the agreement on processed agricultural products regulate customs matters.