Bilateral agreements I are expressed as interdependent. If one of them is pointed at or not renewed, they no longer apply to all of them. According to the preamble to the EU`s decision to ratify the agreements: negotiations between Switzerland and the European Union (EU) for an institutional framework agreement (only Germany) aimed at providing a more sustainable basis for bilateral relations between Switzerland and the EU and paving the way for further market access agreements have stalled in recent months. In the summer of 2019, the EU reacted with the withdrawal of Swiss stock market equivalence. For the Swiss financial centre and other economicly important sectors, it is very important that an agreement between Switzerland and the EU be concluded next year. In 1992, Switzerland held a referendum on membership of the European Economic Area, which allows members of the European Free Trade Association to participate in the EU Single Market. The Swiss voted against EEA membership and chose to continue to adopt a strictly bilateral approach in their relations with the EU. Membership of the EEA would have forced Switzerland to take back part of EU law. Switzerland is not a member state of the European Union (EU). It is linked to the Union through a series of bilateral agreements in which Switzerland has adopted various provisions of EU law to participate in the EU internal market without joining it as a member state. All but one (the micro-state of Liechtenstein) of Switzerland`s neighbouring countries are EU member states.
Following the rejection of EEA membership in 1992, Switzerland and the EU agreed on a set of seven sectoral agreements signed in 1999 (called “bilateral I” in Switzerland). These include the free movement of people, technical barriers to trade, public procurement, agriculture and air and land transport. In addition, a scientific agreement on research has fully integrated Switzerland into the EU`s research framework programmes. From the EU`s point of view, the treaties contain largely the same content as the EEA treaties, making Switzerland a virtual member of the EEA.