New proposals: The E-ID is once again on the agenda of parliament

With regard to digital policy, six identically worded new motions entitled “Trustworthy, state E-ID” stand out. They come from the FDP-Liberal Group, Franz Grüter (SVP), Gerhard Andrey (GPS), Jörg Mäder (glp), Min Li Marti (SP) and Simon Stadler (Die Mitte) and were submitted immediately after the rejection of the E-ID law at the ballot box. The motions call on the Federal Council to create a state E-ID while adhering to the principles of “privacy by design”, data economy and decentralised data storage. In addition, the issuing process and the overall operation should be carried out by state authorities.

A look at the other newly submitted motions and question time shows that the topics of e-health and the expansion to 5G kept parliamentarians busy. In total, more than 40 relevant new motions were submitted on digital policy and 22 questions and urgent interpellations were answered.

Business dealt with in the National Council and Council of States

The National Council was the first to begin discussing the federal law “Protection of Minors in the Areas of Film and Video Games”. With the new law, the Federal Council wants to oblige providers of platform services for videos or video games (e.g. YouTube, Twitch) to set up a system for age verification, to enable parental control and to create a reporting office. The National Council passed the bill by 115 votes to 69 (2 abstentions), but did not have time to discuss the details. This is to take place in the next session.

The National Council again dealt with the Federal Act on “Electronic Procedures in Tax Matters”, which is intended to digitise tax procedures throughout Switzerland. The large chamber maintained its decision that the cantons should be obliged to offer an electronic procedure. The Council of States had spoken out against an obligation. Due to this last difference, the bill goes back to the Council of States.

The Council of States adopted the motion “Sustainable data infrastructure and data governance in the Federal Administration” of the Finance Committee of the National Council as the second Council. This mandates the Federal Council to create central, standardised access to the digital data and processes of the entire federal administration in order to improve the digital exchange between authorities, the economy and civil society.

On the other hand, the Council of States said no to the motion “Provisional judicial opening. Adaptation to changed business practice (digitalisation)” by Marcel Dobler (FDP). This was contrary to the proposal of the Federal Council and the decision of the National Council. The Council of States was of the opinion that the motion was premature, as neither the electronic signature nor the E-ID had yet become established. For this reason, there should be no deviation from the current requirement of a handwritten signature. digitalswitzerland, together with economiesuisse and Swiss Fintech Innovation, had spoken out in favour of accepting the motion. The corresponding letter is available on the platform.

With regard to the 99% initiative (Relieve wages, tax capital fairly. Popular initiative), the Council of States followed the National Council and the Federal Council and clearly rejected the initiative. The initiative will thus be recommended to the electorate for rejection without a counter-proposal. Also on the agenda in the small chamber was the motion “Preparation for the introduction of a digital tax” by Christian Levrat (SP). The Council of States referred the motion to the committee for preliminary examination.

Despite being on the agenda, the Film Act, also known as the “Lex Netflix”, which is pending as part of the Culture Message 2021-2024, was not discussed. The discussion was postponed to the next session due to time constraints.

The full session review is available exclusively to digitalswitzerland and ePower members.

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