National and Council of States begin to legislate – Switzerland

BERNE – The penultimate session of the current legislature begins in Berne on Monday. The National Council and the Council of States wish to take action before the autumn elections.

As a prelude, the National Council sets out rules for whistleblowers. This is the second attempt to improve their protection. The first proposal of the Federal Council, the parliament rejected four years ago. The new edition is now threatening the same fate: the preliminary advisory committee has voted against it.

On the second day, the extension of the railway network is under discussion in the large chamber. The Council of States has already substantially increased its rail infrastructure budget. The Transport Committee of the National Council now wants to increase this amount by another 69 million francs. In addition, the National Council devotes the first week to the Armament program. The purchase of new mine launchers is the main topic of discussion here.

Medical Certification and Copyright

The Council of States recommends the first day the new regime of admission of doctors. Its preliminary advisory committee disagrees on important points with the decisions of the National Council. For example, he rejects a relaxation of the contractual obligation.

On the second day, the revision of the Copyright Act is on the agenda. In the spring session, the Council of States sent the Commission the controversial draft law on incidental copyright for newspaper publishers. This has now decided to go without such a scheme.

Bearer shares and national roads

In addition, the Council of States will decide in the first week whether bearer shares should be converted into registered shares. Its commission accepts in principle the proposals of the Bundesrat. The National Council does not wish to modify the existing bearer shares.

When enlarging national roads, the Council of States should also decide differently from the National Council, which had approved three less advanced projects. The Council of States ruled against it.

Corporate responsibility

The collective responsibility initiative is one of the important topics of the second week of the week. The Council of States had rejected an indirect counterproposal during the spring session. The National Council is back on the train. His commission asked him to stay in his counter-proposal decision. At the same time, it represents a weakening perspective.

The Corporate Responsibility Initiative aims to make obligatory companies based in Switzerland liable for human rights violations and environmental damage suffered by their subsidiaries abroad.

Drinking water and paternity leave

Popular initiatives are also at the center of the third week of the session. The National Council is working on the Drinking Water Initiative and the initiative "For a Switzerland without synthetic pesticides". The first requires that only farms receiving pesticides and preventative antibiotics give up subsidies. The second calls for the prohibition of synthetic pesticides.

The Council of States deals with paternity leave. A popular initiative requires a four-week vacation. The preliminary advisory commission wants to divert the initiators with a legal regulation for two weeks of vacation.

Controversial gender values

In addition, the State Council is complying with the major corporate law reform, which includes gender criteria for senior executives and boards of directors of large listed companies. The National Council had just voted for. The State Council Committee does not want to give direction to management.

The framework agreement with the EU will also take over the advice during the summer session: both will vote on motions from the commission. The Federal Council should be responsible for conducting further negotiations with the EU.

The session lasts until June 21st. There will be no meeting on Whit Monday. The councils meet on Friday, June 14th. On June 12, the factions will participate in traditional tours in the afternoon, for the last time of the current composition.