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EU to review Swiss ties after vote curbing immigration

The European Union warned it will review ties with Switzerland after the non-member Alpine country voted Sunday to restrict EU immigration in a closely-fought referendum. Final results of the plebiscite showed 50.3 percent of voters backed the "Stop Mass Immigration" plan pushed by Swiss right-wing populists. The fall-out from the result could sink a raft of deals with the EU, including on the economic front. Switzerland is ringed by EU member countries and does the bulk of its trade with the 28-nation bloc, but has remained steadfast about not becoming a member.

EU to review Swiss ties after vote curbing immigration

The European Union warned it will review ties with Switzerland after the non-member Alpine country voted Sunday to restrict EU immigration in a closely-fought referendum. Final results of the plebiscite showed 50.3 percent of voters backed the "Stop Mass Immigration" plan pushed by Swiss right-wing populists. The fall-out from the result could sink a raft of deals with the EU, including on the economic front. Switzerland is ringed by EU member countries and does the bulk of its trade with the 28-nation bloc, but has remained steadfast about not becoming a member.

EU to review Swiss ties after vote curbing immigration

The European Union said Sunday it will review ties with Switzerland after the non-member Alpine country voted to restict EU immigration in a referendum cheered by right-wing parties across Europe. Final results of the nail-bitingly close plebiscite showed 50.3 percent of voters backed the "Stop Mass Immigration" plan pushed by Swiss right-wing populists. The fall-out from the result could sink a raft of deals with the EU, including on the economic front.

Swiss vote to curb EU migrants, Brussels to review ties

Switzerland voted Sunday to impose curbs on European Union immigrants, in a nail-bitingly close referendum that sparked warnings from Brussels that it would review EU ties with the Alpine country. Final results showed that 50.3 percent of voters backed the "Stop Mass Immigration" plan pushed by right-wing populists. The fall-out from the result could sink a raft of deals, including on the economic front. Switzerland is ringed by EU member countries and does the bulk of its trade with the 28-nation bloc, but has remained steadfast about not becoming a member.

EU seeks public comment on US trade pact investment protection terms

The European Commission said Tuesday it will seek public comment on controversial investment protection provisions being negotiated as part of a massive EU-US free trade deal. "I know some people in Europe have genuine concerns about this part of the EU-US deal. Now I want them to have their say," EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht said. "Some existing arrangements have caused problems in practice, allowing companies to exploit loopholes where the legal text has been vague," De Gucht noted in a statement.

EU seeks public comment on US trade pact investment protection terms

The European Commission said Tuesday it will seek public comment on controversial investment protection provisions being negotiated as part of a massive EU-US free trade deal. "I know some people in Europe have genuine concerns about this part of the EU-US deal. Now I want them to have their say," EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht said. "Some existing arrangements have caused problems in practice, allowing companies to exploit loopholes where the legal text has been vague," De Gucht noted in a statement.

Spain says EU considering closer ties with Cuba, but human rights issues remain a priority

MADRID - European Union countries may consider upgrading the bloc's trade relations with Cuba, but only if Havana respects human rights, Spain's foreign minister said Monday. Jose Manuel Garcia Margallo said EU countries have discussed asking the European Commission, the EU's executive arm, to explore the possibility of reaching an association agreement with Cuba. Association agreements normally pave the way for trade liberalization with countries outside the 28-nation EU.

Russian pressure on neighbours strains ties with EU

Moscow's pressure on former Soviet states in eastern Europe -- Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova -- is piling further pressure on already strained EU-Russia ties, European leaders said Friday. "We have differences, even a long list of differences" with Russia, said European Council president Herman Van Rompuy at the close of a two-day summit. "Pressure on some of the countries belonging to our Eastern Partnership is adding ... to the list of our differences," he added.

China seeks to boost trade with ex-communist Europe

By Ioana Patran BUCHAREST (Reuters) - China wants to double trading volumes with central and eastern members of the European Union in the next five years, Li Keqiang said on his first visit to the former communist bloc as premier. China and the EU announced at a summit last week that the two sides would begin talks on a treaty aimed at boosting investment, which lags behind burgeoning trade, and tackling thorny market access issues.

Ukraine halts work on preparing agreement with EU

The Ukrainian government on Thursday ordered work to be halted on preparations to sign a historic trade and political agreement with the European Union at a key summit this month. The decree ordered the "halt of the process of preparing the Association Agreement between Ukraine and the European Union," said the text of the document posted on the government website.
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