On March 7, State Councillor Ruedi Noser submitted a motion calling for Startup-Visa for founders and investors. On the same day National Councillor Marcel Dobler submitted a motion to ease foreign students studying in Switzerland the access to the Swiss labour market. Both parliamentary motions are in line with demands from our Digital Manifesto for Switzerland.

Ruedi Noser is founding member and part of the steering committee of digitalswitzerland. Marcel Dobler was part of the 50 Digital Shapers who put together the Manifesto. He handed over the Digital Manifesto to Federal Councillor Johannes Schneider-Ammann at the World Web Forum this January.

We are very excited to see some of the demands in the Digital Manifesto (DE / FR / EN) already taking shape.

Legislative process for demands in the digital manifesto started

50 Swiss pioneers of the national digitization scene, entrepreneurs, financiers, and politicians put their heads together and created a digital vision for Switzerland. The output was a Digital Manifesto. The result is our Digital Manifesto, which functions as a comprehensive blueprint for the digitization of Switzerland.

Both parliamentary motions align with a central demand from the Digital Manifesto. The section on measures for politics and legislation states:

“And there must be no unnecessary obstacles to prevent experts, talent, and people wishing to start companies from migrating to Switzerland. Measures must be taken to deal with a shortage of labor. Enough work permits should be available for professions requiring high levels of qualifications.”
Our Digital manifesto for Switzerland, page 5

To this effect, Ruedi Noser instructs the federal council (only in german) to create a new category of work permits for foreigners. Foreigners who want to build a startup in Switzerland should receive unbureaucratic admission. The same applies for foreigners who want to invest in startups in Switzerland. These provisions should provide incentives to attract innovative minds into our country.

Marcel Dobler requests the federal council (only in german) to create the necessary conditions for foreign students to stay in Switzerland after they graduated. Today a lot of young foreign specialists need to leave Switzerland right after their graduation because the contingents are used up. Switzerland needs to change its regulation for areas with massive shortages of specialists, especially within the STEM-professions.

This report explains the regulatory consequences for foreign students.

digitalswitzerland will be monitoring the issues and keep you updated on the developments. We are working hard to ensure that other demands of our Digital Manifesto find their way into the legislative process.

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Author Daniel Scherrer

Head of Communications & Public Affairs @digitalswitzerland

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