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SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/22/2019 12:16
The director of Switzerland’s tourism marketing company has dismissed criticism that the country is overrun by Asian tourists. Martin Nydegger said concerns by the local population about too many tourists should be taken seriously. But the perception of overtourism was mistaken and potentially damaging. He said notably Chinese and Indian guests were more noticeable in public, but they were outnumbered by tourists from Europe and the United States visiting Switzerland. He also pointed out that the local tourist industry benefited from an increasing number of Asian tourists who helped compensate for the European guests staying away as a result of the Euro crisis in 2008. “I don’t want to imagine a situation where this would not have been poss.
SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/22/2019 05:35
Two Swiss entries in the Hyperloop contest – a competition to develop futuristic high-speed transport pods – have finished in the top three spots. The student-built pods from the federal technology institutes in Zurich (ETH Zurich) and Lausanne (EPFL) finished second and third respectively in the final of the contest held at the headquarters of Elon Musk’s SpaceX group in California. Held each year, Hyperloop awards prizes for the best-developed transport pods – capsules capable of travelling at great speeds in vacuum tubes and, possibly, the means of future travel. ETH Zurich’s “Claude Nicollier” (named after Switzerland’s first astronaut) took second place with a top speed of 257km/h (160mph) on the 1.2-kilometre test course; EPFL’s “Bell.
SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/22/2019 02:42
The adage in financial markets is “do not fight the central bank”. But can central banks fight the US president? The Swiss National Bank (SNB) may be about to find out. Swiss policymakers are, not for the first time, stuck in the crossfire of their peers. As central banks in both the US and the eurozone shift into rate-cutting mode, the Alpine nation must choose between allowing the franc to strengthen, hurting inflation in the process, or risking the wrath of the US administration by intervening in its currency. Already, the franc is uncomfortably strong. Its status as a haven, a magnet to investors in times of stress, means it is already trading at its strongest level against the euro in two years. Rate cuts from other heavy-hitting centr.
SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/21/2019 11:34
Switzerland stands to lose up to CHF10 billion ($10.2 billion) as a consequence of attempts by other countries to change how multinationals are taxed. Countries belonging to the G20 and OECD are pushing for changes in corporate taxation rules to capture a larger share of taxes of multinationals based in tax-friendly destinations like Switzerland. They want companies to pay taxes where they generate their sales and not just where they are located. They also want all firms to be subject to minimum taxation. Finance Minister Ueli Maurer had hinted at shortfalls of between CHF1-5 billion in the Swiss treasury if these measures are implemented. However, the NZZ am Sonntag paper claims the country could lose up to CHF10 billion if the impact of t.
SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/20/2019 11:00
Almost every article published by swissinfo.ch contains a percentage, an age, an amount of money or some other figure. Here’s a round-up of some of the most interesting statistics to appear in the past week’s stories. 20,000 The seating capacity of the open-air arena at the once-in-a-generation Fête des Vignerons, which kicked off with a flourish on Thursday. This winegrowers’ festival in Vevey, by Lake Geneva, is on UNESCO's list of Intangible Cultural Heritage sites and happens only once in a generation. 129 The number of grams of microplastics per km2 in Lake Geneva, according to a recent analysis by the Oceaneye group. The numbers put Lake Geneva in the same category as bodies of water such as the Mediterranean. The global average for s.
SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/17/2019 14:57
The United States Senate on Wednesday ratified a double-taxation agreement (DTA) with Switzerland, ending years of stalemate. The agreement, which required two-thirds of votes, was accepted by a large majority, according to the US Senate website. This accord, designed to meet international standards on the exchange of bank data, had been blocked for ten years by one US Senator. Rand Paul of the Republican Party fought against the DTA, which had already been signed in 2009, on grounds that it violated privacy. According to the Senate's rules, an individual member of parliament can prevent a bill from being discussed by the entire House. Mitch McConnell, the Republican majority leader in the Senate, found a loophole for the vote on Wednesday,
SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/17/2019 13:18
Swiss State Secretary for Foreign Affairs Pascale Baeriswyl is to fly to Saudi Arabia this Sunday for political consultations, just after the foreign ministry banned aircraft firm Pilatus from operating there. Baeriswyl will be accompanied by specialists on financial, economic and human rights issues, according to the foreign affairs ministry. Spokesman Pierre-Alain Eltschinger said these political exchanges have been taking place every year since 2012 and are an occasion to discuss bilateral as well as regional and global issues. This time the talks will nevertheless be taking place in a particular context. On June 26, the foreign ministry banned aircraft manufacturer Pilatus from providing services to the armed forces of Saudi Arabia and
SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/17/2019 11:00
Yet more overseas blockchain firms are coming to Switzerland to set up foundations. British company Atlas City will establish a non-profit entity for its Catalyst project. But what’s in it for commercial enterprises that develop cutting-edge technologies? The Swiss foundation model looked to be faltering with disputes at Tezos and Cardano last year. But 18 crypto foundations were set up in 2018, bringing the total number to 58. The Geneva-based Libra Association is also expected to establish its own foundation to manage Facebook’s cryptocurrency project. Part of the reason for setting up a foundation lies in the ethos of blockchain and other distributed ledger technology (DLT) systems: to offer decentralised platforms that anyone can use to.
SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/17/2019 09:53
Most organic produce sold in Switzerland comes wrapped in plastic, whereas the percentage is lower for non-organic produce, according to the Consumer Protection Foundation. A test by the Foundation showed that 84% of organic fruit and vegetables came in plastic film, while the percentage for conventionally grown produce was 44%, it said on Wednesday. “This is doubly annoying for organic consumers, who as a rule attach particular importance to environmentally friendly consumption,” it added. The Consumer Protection Foundation sampled 221 products in 10 shops in the cities of Bern and Basel. The outlets included retail giants Migros, Coop, Denner, Aldi and Lidl. Reacting on Wednesday, Migros said it had set itself the goal of doubling open sa.
SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/17/2019 08:00
Nine stone cottages have gone on the market in Italian-speaking Switzerland at CHF1 ($1.01) each – on condition that the buyers do them up. The municipality of Gambarogno thus aims to regenerate and develop the mountain region of Sciaga. Mount Sciaga is a mountain pasture belonging to the hamlet of Indemini, one of the most remote inhabited areas in the southern canton of Ticino. Indemini is located in a valley, Val Veddasca, that is almost entirely Italian territory, but it is Swiss and some 18 kilometres of winding curves and a mountain pass from Gambarogno, to which it has belonged since a merging of municipalities in 2010. The typical stone buildings make up the historic centre of Indemini as well as Mount Sciaga on the opposite side of.
SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/16/2019 08:39
Despite an increase in the use of biofuels and electric vehicles, fuel-related carbon dioxide emissions remained unchanged in 2018 in the country. The stagnation was due to the increase in road traffic. Owing to a rise in the average number of kilometres Swiss residents travelled last year, as well as growth in higher-emissions passenger vehicles – mainly four-wheel drives – fuel-related CO2 emissions in 2017 were still 3.3% above their 1990 level, the Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN) reported on Tuesday. Biofuels, which helped temper the increase, represented 3.5% of all fuels used in Switzerland – a 36% increase compared to the previous year. Meanwhile, average CO2 emissions from fuel oil and gas fell by 2.2%. This is mainly due
SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/15/2019 16:02
Facebook believes Switzerland to be the appropriate authority to regulate its Geneva-based cryptocurrency payments system Libra, project head David Marcus told a United States Congress hearing. Marcus also told US lawmakers that Switzerland’s data protection commissioner should oversee Libra’s stated commitment not to monetise users’ data in the way that Facebook makes profit from selling personal information to advertisers. Marcus was testifying on Monday to a hearing held by the US Congress House Financial Services Committee. The hearing was set up partially to address “national security” concerns surrounding Libra. The Congress committee has expressed reservations about “an entirely new global financial system that is based out of Switze.
SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/15/2019 08:19
The 42nd World Congress of Vine and Wine is being held this week in Geneva. Around 500 experts from 47 countries will participate and discuss sustainability under the motto “Preservation and innovation: expectations at the environmental, economic and social level”. Speakers come from countries traditionally associated with vineyards such as France, Spain and Italy but also from Japan and Bolivia and consumer countries such as Denmark and Britain, the International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV) said on Monday. Talks will address climate change, to which vineyards are very sensitive, the development of products and how to protect vines, it said. In addition to presentations and debates, the programme also includes field visits in Geneva.
SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/15/2019 05:18
Most apartment rents in Switzerland’s main cities have increased over the past two years, with Zurich remaining the priciest place for property. The average monthly rent of a three-room apartment of 70 square metres will set you back between CHF1,370 ($1,390) and CHF3,760, depending on the area. The banking district of Paradeplatz tops the list at CHF3,760 – nearly CHF520 more than the previous analysis in 2017, real estate portal Homegate.ch said on Monday. As everywhere, prices fall as one goes further from the centre. + A guide to housing in Switzerland In second place is Geneva, where rent in the Bel-Air district now exceeds an average of CHF3,000. The authors of the study also note the near-absence of three-room apartments at less than.
SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/15/2019 03:19
Trafigura, one of the world’s biggest commodity traders, is to stop using intermediaries – the well-connected individuals who help set up contracts in resource-rich countries. The privately owned company, which trades more than 5.5 million barrels of oil per day, will end all of its “business development” agreements with agents by October, although it will continue to use security advisers, risk analysts and other specialist service providers such as port agents. The move by Trafigura follows a series of corruption investigations and allegations involving intermediaries and middlemen that have caused alarm at the highest levels of the commodity trading industry. Top executives and bankers are worried that the sector, which has been trying t.
SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/14/2019 09:56
The Swiss Federal Railways (SBB) is selling its old locomotives on the Internet. Control cars, rails, switches and a firefighting train with a CHF1 million ($1 million) price tag are among the vintage vehicles on sale. You will be hard pressed to find anything for less than CHF25,000 on SBBresale.ch, according to the Sunday editions of the German-language Blick newspaper and French-language Le Matin. Several pieces have already been sold so SBB is now looking to expand its offering. "We want to operate even more sustainably and, if possible, give vehicles and facilities a second life," an SBB spokesman told Blick. "In addition to the ecological component, there is also an economic side: if we can sell more products, this will relieve the SB.
SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/14/2019 05:00
The stage director and choreographer from Ticino is the designer behind the 2019 Fête des Vignerons, the traditional winegrowers’ festival which opens in Vevey on July 18. Like his other productions, the inaugural pageant promises to be magical, he tells swissinfo.ch. In the opulent setting of the Grand Théâtre in Geneva, Daniele Finzi Pasca looks like an elf who has escaped from a children᾽s tale, with his trim figure, bright eyes, agile gait and lively gestures. The artist from Ticino is a wizard on the stage who can also juggle with words. His speech flows, interwoven with metaphors. A much sought-after international artist who is always on the move, he is pressed for time. We are taking advantage of his visit to Geneva to interview him.
SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/13/2019 11:00
Almost every article published by swissinfo.ch contains a percentage, an age, an amount of money or some other figure. Here’s a round-up of some of the most interesting statistics to appear in the past week’s stories. 6 A Swiss aerial display team missed the target of their flyover on Sunday afternoon by some six kilometres. Instead of passing over a gathering to mark the centenary of the death of local aviation pioneer Oskar Bider, the jets flew over a yodelling festival in nearby Mümliswil. 384,400 The number of dollar millionaires in Switzerland (population 8.4 million) last year, according to the latest World Wealth Report by consultants Capgemini. The Swiss figure was down 1% compared to the previous year. After seven years of growth,
SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/12/2019 06:58
The Swiss Fairness Commission has rebuked two influencers over non-declared advertising made in posts made on Instagram, Swiss public television SRF has learned. The decision concerns a post each by snowboard champion Iouri Podladtchikov and mountain biker Jolanda Neff, according the SRF report published on Friday. SRF has seen the decisions, which are the first in Switzerland concerning influencer advertising. The move comes after the Swiss Foundation for Consumer Protection filed a complaint with the Swiss Fairness Commission against Swiss tennis star Roger Federer and several other celebrity “influencers”, accusing them of “stealth advertising” on Instagram and other social media sites. The celebrities do not have to fear fines, as the S.
SwissInfo (Switzerland) 07/12/2019 05:20
The Swiss Farmers’ Union has warned that the effects of extreme weather due to climate change are already being felt on Swiss farms. “We must act now,” said the union’s president, the parliamentarian Markus Ritter at a news conference on Thursday, on a farm near Bern. Farmers are increasingly being affected by frost, hail, storms, long stretches of rain – or no rain, and summer drought, he said. An example: the extremely dry summer of 2018, which affected crops, especially potatoes, corn on the cob, grains and animal feed. The union wants to encourage the use of more environmentally friendly crops that use less water. However, farming also contributes to climate change: cows emit methane gases. It is difficult to stop this, Ritter said. Nev.

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