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SWITZERLAND – Federal Council Confirms Initial List of Occupations Requiring Labour Market Test

, 23/05/2018

On 23 May 2018, the Swiss Federal Council confirmed the initial list of occupations for which, from 1 July 2018, employers wishing to hire foreign nationals will have to test the Swiss labour market by advertising.

At the same time, the Federal Council simplified the preparation and publication of the list and delegated it to the Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research (WBF).

Positions in these occupations will have to be advertised online for five days through the Public Employment Service (PES).

What occupations are affected?
Listed occupations include several categories of agricultural workers, watchmakers, warehouse workers, construction workers, PR experts, marketers, telephone operators, reception staff, domestic, laundry and kitchen personnel and actors, among others.

How is the list created?
Initially, the requirement will only be applied for occupations with an unemployment rate of 8% or above. This threshold will be lowered to 5% from 1 January 2020.
The unemployment rate is calculated nationwide on the basis of the average over twelve months in each occupational category.
The list will be updated by a regulation of the WBF in the fourth quarter of each year, based on the average unemployment rates over the previous four quarters.
The regulation issued by the WBF today is based on the average unemployment rates for the period from 1 April 2017 until 30 March 2018 and will apply from 1 July 2018.

Action Items
Employers in Switzerland intending to hire foreign nationals after 1 July 2018 for occupations with a high unemployment rate should allow for the delay of having to advertise positions for five days.