Home > News > World
Tuesday February 11, 2014 MYT 2:45:10 AM
Tuesday February 11, 2014 MYT 2:46:16 AM
BRUSSELS (Reuters) - The European Commission has stopped talks with Switzerland on a cross-border electricity agreement, a spokeswoman for the EU executive said on Monday, following the country's referendum vote to curtail immigration.
The Commission has been seeking closer power trading ties with Switzerland to complement a common energy market for the 28-strong European Union, which it has a deadline to complete this year.
But it said that talks with Bern about a scheme to make it easier to trade energy could not continue without wider political clarity.
"No technical negotiations on the electricity agreement between Switzerland and the EU are foreseen for the moment," Commission spokeswoman Sabine Berger said. "The way forward needs to be analysed in view of the broader context of the bilateral relations."
Separately, senior European officials said Switzerland could lose its privileged access to the European single market in general following the narrow vote in the referendum on Sunday.
Free movement of people and jobs within its borders is one of the fundamental policies of the EU, and Switzerland, while not a member of the bloc, has participated under a pact with Brussels.
Late last year, EU Energy Commissioner Guenther Oettinger had said the Commission was in intense negotiations with Switzerland to integrate it into the bloc's single energy market.
Swiss participation is important for extending the common energy market for countries such as Italy, which border Switzerland.
Even if the regulations on a single market can be hammered out, the European Union still has a huge task ahead to create all the necessary infrastructure for a single energy area.
The Commission has succeeded in encouraging a process called market-coupling, which links together electricity exchanges and standardises trading rules.
(Reporting by Barbara Lewis; Editing by Anthony Barker)
Swedish far right set for action after storming win on welfare worry
Forging coalition, Sweden's new left leader angers ally
Swedish Liberals say ready to work with centre left after vote
EU delays new Russia sanctions, to meet on Thursday
Sweden votes for minority left government, far right surges
U.S. to deliver 10 Apache helicopters to Egypt: Pentagon
Afghan rivals set to sign unity government deal after messy election
Cause of Air Algerie July crash in Mali still unknown
Pope and Argentine president 'talk finance' in private at Vatican
French PM condemns farmers protests in Brittany
Reports: Second apparent leak of hacked celebrity nude pictures
We are ‘framily’: When a vacation with close friends does you good
Exclusive - Iran seeks give and take on militants, nuclear programme
Tevez strikes again as Juve beat toothless Milan
Copyright © 1995-2014 Star Publications (M) Bhd (Co No 10894-D)