A clarification of the labor law issue at Euro-Airport can appear from Baselbiet to Geneva
In the Swiss sector of Euro-Airport, there is uncertainty in employment law. A possible solution could be the establishment of a special economic zone around Euro Airport.
The French are deeply offended, and there are no positive signals that the tiresome problem of clarifying the current labor law in the Swiss sector of Euro Airport through a state treaty is missing. One was already on the verge of it, as the Alsatian politician Olivier Becht explained to “SRF” this summer. Then came the Federal Council’s decision not to buy the new fighter jets in France but in the USA, and since then there has been radio silence. The connection is independently confirmed by several other sources.
Gift for the Swiss companies at the airport
This is a problem for the trinational region of Basel. The legal uncertainty at the airport is poison for the Swiss companies there. It is astonishing that the two largest companies, Jet Aviation and Amac Aérospace, have nevertheless invested 43 million francs in the location in recent years.
In order to clarify the question of labor law, a state treaty is needed that will stand up to the French courts, but also to the EU. Time is passing: Under a right-wing populist President Marine Le Pen, whose election is becoming more and more likely in a few years, the abandonment of a substantive law such as labor law seems difficult to imagine.
It is already becoming extremely difficult to find majorities for this – if the French are interested in a solution at all. A model for the airport could have been a European special economic zone planned for the former Fessenheim nuclear power plant. Unfortunately, the project seems to have failed because there is hardly anything left of the original 200 hectares of land.
Economic development competition for the airport
The cantonal initiative launched two years ago by Basel Grand Councilor Lorenz Amiet (SVP), according to which Switzerland should buy parts of the airport or set up a special economic zone, has not been passed on by the Grand Council.
Marc Bros de Puechredon, CEO of BAK Economics, will not leave it at that. He advocates investigating in an “innovative study” how other countries deal with such special zones, which could benefit both France and Switzerland. In general, it is absolutely necessary to announce a competition for further economic development around the airport, according to de Puechredon. Both make sense. The statement by the French embassy that they are aware of the importance of the Swiss sector for southern Alsace is encouraging.
How things will continue with Euro Airport could also have further consequences. In Geneva, with the CERN, which is partly located on French soil, the situation is similar to that at Euro Airport. In the Basel area, there is speculation that a land exchange with the French will be possible for the construction of the new road near the Bachgraben. If there is no agreement at the airport, one for the Bachgraben should also disappear.
The Swiss companies at Euro-Airport will have no choice but to come to terms with the fact that French labor law will apply in the event of a conflict until a state treaty is signed. Should the state treaty fail for a longer period of time, which CANNOT be ruled out due to the complicated starting position, they would already be prepared for it.