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As the true China-Deal fell through

Tian Wei wanted to know exactly. In an Interview with the presenter of the Chinese state broadcaster CGTN on Monday, Federal President Ueli Maurer, what were the similarities between Switzerland and China asked.

Mason said, they are working in the two countries harder than anywhere else. He mentioned the inventor's spirit. Similarly, the values are in the society. The two States were "basically neighbors," said the Federal President. Moderator Tian Wei nodded reverently.

The neutral, directly-democratic Confederation and the increasingly totalitarian people's Republic of China – a community of values? Maurer was also, as his Delegation signed on the same day a Memorandum of Understanding with the Switzerland to participate in China's gigantic silk road project. Switzerland, Maurer, compared to the NZZ, is convinced to take over the "Belt And Road"Initiative, "a kind of pioneering role". For Democracy. For The Protection Of The Environment. For Sustainability. And against corruption.

"In the second Memorandum, the Switzerland wanted to address sensitive issues. Nothing came of it."

What not to put Mason open to: last summer, the Federal Council decided to commit to the decision, China is in a higher-level agreement on exactly these values. The Federal Council wanted road create a balance to the economic silk Deal. However, China was Switzerland's emergence. On the basis of approximately a dozen interviews with insiders from different Departments, editorial, reconstructed, why the Federal Council agreed to the silk road.

Ueli Maurer is not the first Federal President, who was received with much fanfare in Beijing. In may 2017 already, Doris Leuthard (CVP) was the Chinese head of state Xi Jinping at the first summit welcomes. At the latest after Leuthards return, it dawned on the entire Federal Council, that the Chinese expect him to be more than just polite interest, and economic participation in the road project of the century the silk. The people's Republic of wish from Switzerland a formal commitment to the Belt and Road Initiative in the Form of a written agreement.

Because of these sensitivities, for Western partners too much proximity to China is also for the Federal Council, sensitive.

Such a legally non-binding, symbolic but important memoranda of Understanding – has the Chinese government in recent years, with dozens of countries. With this power, the middle Kingdom binds the Rest of the world is becoming more and more his project of the century – and to yourself. As in March, with Italy, a first G-7 state of such an agreement signed, and was heard in many Western capitals of the allegation, Italy, under the course of a United Front against the Chinese "system rivals" (O-tone of the EU Commission).

Because of these sensitivities, for Western partners too much proximity to China is also for the Federal Council, sensitive. Add to this the advance of the left, criticism from the domestic market, the Federal Council is sacrifice in its China policy the Swiss values of the economic Profit. Accordingly, the Federal Council discussed the road starting in may 2017, after the first summit on how to proceed.

what is Clear is that civil Federal councillors argued that they should benefit from the opportunities offered by the Multi-billion project of the Swiss economy.

Is the neutral?

Other Federal councillors raised critical questions: Must cooperate with Switzerland as a country, over a Million Uighurs in re-education camps? You should a country-celebrating friendship with a Regime that is in the process of its 1.4 billion citizens, the largest surveillance apparatus in the world history? In the neutral Switzerland, a one-party dictatorship, the Hand, the respect for the sovereignty of democratic countries, such as Taiwan?

According to the Federal Council the middle people, the struggle dragged on, the new silk road on several government meetings, until it finally ended with a credit-speaking of compromise: In June 2018, the government, to do the one and not the other: to make the Chinese continue to engage in business and to talk about human rights decided. In the case of the silk road, to participate and to fight its negative consequences for people and the environment.

Specifically, the Federal Council decided to not just one, but two agreements should be reached: first, the China-desired technical, economic agreements. Secondly, a "roof-Memorandum", in which the delicate political issues to be addressed: the human rights, dealing with ethnic minorities, social and environmental problems.

gave the Federal Council?

During the talks progressed to the first agreement quickly, it became apparent that China has a values-agreement no interest.

On 10. April recognized the Federal Council that the original China-Plan had failed. Nevertheless, he granted the Federal President Ueli Maurer, the mandate, drawing a technical-economic agreements in the framework of the silk road summit. Although Simonetta Sommaruga and Alain Berset (both SP), and Viola Amherd (CVP) should have put this approach to critical questions. That one of the three Federal Council would have opposed the members in the completion of fundamental, however, is not known.

the Federal Council, with its departure from the original China gave Plan? He put economic interests above the values of Switzerland? So clearly the thing seems. Outside of the economic cooperation of the interested departments of Ueli Maurer and Guy Parmelin it acknowledged that Switzerland has succeeded, different formulations on the values of sustainability and environmental protection into the technical agreement. This is a good thing. The Federal Council spokesman André Simonazzi indicates that in addition to the official final Declaration of the silk road summit. She was also a political success for Switzerland. Here, namely those of Switzerland, and other countries desired elements (human rights, had been incorporated", international Standards) completely".

The topic checked

How it goes now, is open. According to the dossier, related parties to the negotiations to a roof-Memorandum, in spite of everything. If you ever come to a conclusion, no one knows. In Parallel, the Federal Council revised its whole China strategy. Because with the growing weight of China, the Switzerland would have been-China relations intensified, wrote the Federal Council in February to a vote, in the SP national councillor Fabian Molina a more coherent China strategy calls for. Also in Parliament, the uncertainty about China's growth, the fact that the Motion of the Left Molina found in a bourgeois-dominated national Council, a majority.

several Times, this newspaper asked the Federal President to set a date for a conversation about China. In vain. A spokesman said that the issue of China to be checked for Ueli Maurer.

(editing Tamedia)

Created: 03.05.2019, 22:33 PM

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