Austria and Switzerland - Read the latest headlines about bilateral relations in the areas of economy, business, investment, diplomacy, culture and tourism
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Switzerland in Austria | Swiss in Vienna | Bilateral Relations

Foreign Trade: Imports and Exports Pass the 150 Billion Euro Mark for the First Time

The total nominal value of imports of goods in 2018 was 5.8% higher than in the previous year at 156.06 billion euros, while exports of goods rose by 5.7% to 150.1 billion euros. This results in a trade deficit of 5.99 billion euros. More than half of Austria's foreign trade was spread across only five countries.

July 10, 2019

Schallenberg Represents Austria in the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva

Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg travelled to Geneva on the occasion of the current meeting of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC). Last year Austria was elected to the UN Human Rights Council for the period 2019 to 2021.

July 2, 2019

Cooperation of the Metropolises Hamburg, Vienna and Zurich

The three German-speaking cities of Hamburg, Vienna and Zurich want to cooperate more closely in their sustainable development within the framework of a city trialogue in line with the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

June 12, 2019

Global Compact for Migration: Top UN Refugee Agency Diplomat Volker Türk at the Kreisky Forum

Austria's top diplomat in the UNHCR, a United Nations Programme, the international law expert Dr. Volker Türk has made an appeal to governments, NGOs and individuals to rethink refugee protection and to implement the UN Global Compact for Refugees adopted in 2018.

June 6, 2019

Summit of German-speaking Heads of State in Linz 2019

This year's informal meeting of German-speaking heads of state with Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Grand Duke Henri of Luxembourg, King Philippe of Belgium, Federal President Ueli Maurer, Hereditary Prince Alois von und zu Liechtenstein and Federal President Alexander Van der Bellen took place in Linz. The main topics were current political questions from the respective countries and the future of Europe based on the results of the European elections.

June 5, 2019

40 Years of the UN in Vienna - The Tireless Commitment of António Guterres

UN Secretary General António Guterres completed a busy programme when he came to Vienna for the 40th anniversary celebrations and the R20 Austria World Summit. The VIC Vienna International Centre is the place where, with the help of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), the 193 member states, 15 Vienna-based UN organisations and more than 5000 people from 125 countries from around the world are bound together.

May 31, 2019

Diplomats for the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia 2019

More and more embassies, delegations and permanent representations to international organisations supported this day (IDAHOBIT), that raises awareness of LGBT rights violations and stimulate interest in LGBT rights work worldwide, as well as EuroPride 2019 in Vienna.

May 29, 2019

Chinese Whispers - 中国私语

Don't miss the Chinese contemporary art exhibition "Chinese Whispers: Recent Art from the Sigg Collection", which shows 100 objects from the collection of the Swiss collector Uli Sigg until 26 May in the MAK - Museum of Applied Arts. Among other artists, works by internationally renowned artists such as Ai Weiwei, Cao Fei, Feng Mengbo, He Xiangyu, Liu Ding, and Song Dong are on display.

May 15, 2019

1989-2019: Europe Exhibition Opened at Vienna`s Heldenplatz

The new exhibition "Moving Moments - The End of the Division of Europe" (Bewegende Momente - Das Ende der Teilung Europas) looks back on the fall of the Iron Curtain and pays tribute to the achievements of the people in these mostly peaceful revolutions. It also shows how the European Union is seen today by young people from these countries.

May 10, 2019

Migration Agency Demands New EU Migration Policy

Vienna based think tank International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD) is teaming up with its 17 member states to draw up migration policy recommendations for the next EU Commission.

May 10, 2019

Austria's Most Important Trading Partners - Ranking of the Top-20

Although the United States is only the second largest Austrian export partner after Germany, in 2018 exports exceeded the ten billion euro mark for the first time, growing by +9.7%. Imports, on the other hand, were only about half as high. Of the top 20 import partners, all, with the exception of Switzerland, showed a positive development. Imports from Russia, the UK, Slovakia, Poland and Slovenia recorded double-digit growth.

March 29, 2019

Austrian Tourism: 45 Mio. Arrivals and 150 Mio. Overnight Stays in 2018 - Germans Return

With 149.75 million overnight stays in Austrian accommodation establishments, a new record was reached in 2018. Compared to the previous year, overnight stays increased by 5.25 million (+3.6%). At +5.0% (56.26 million), the number of overnight stays by Germans rose disproportionately strongly.

January 24, 2019

Von der Leyen in Vienna - Europe Is Shaping an Army

At a meeting of the defence ministers of Germany, Austria and Switzerland in Vienna, German Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen once again called for a common European army and closer cooperation.

January 18, 2019

New Austrian Foreign Trade Strategy: Growth, Jobs, Prosperity

In a joint event in the Aula of Sciences, the Federal Government's new foreign trade strategy was presented by Economics Minister Margarete Schramböck, Foreign Minister Karin Kneissl and President of the Chamber of Commerce Harald Mahrer. The key points of the strategy are the following: Perspective, value orientation, location effect, focal points, future orientation, communication, efficient coordination.

December 20, 2018

Sebastian Kurz: EU and Switzerland to Intensify Relations Further

Federal Chancellor Kurz held a working meeting with Swiss President Alain Berset in Bern. The meeting focused on, among other topics, an assessment of Brexit, the Western Balkans, the nuclear agreement with Iran, relations with Russia and the priorities of the Austrian EU Presidency.

November 22, 2018

Updated Directory of Foreign Ambassadors in Austria 2019

Below you will find the updated Vindobona.org list of foreign ambassadors and representatives of the bilateral and multilateral missions and representations in Vienna, Austria (including description of persons, pictures, CVs, etc.).

November 19, 2018 · Updated: July 19, 2019; 11:50

Swiss Pharmaceutical Group Invests 142 Million Euros in its Viennese Research Facilities

The international pharmaceutical group Octapharma is expanding its R&D location in Vienna. After two and a half years of construction, the company celebrated the opening of a new research and development center. Together with two other major investments up to 2021, the total investment sum for all three projects will amount to 142 million euros. Since the beginning of 2017, 170 new jobs have been created. By 2026, the company plans to employ a further 300 people.

October 25, 2018

Migration Policy Agency Celebrates 25th Anniversary and Welcomes New Members Malta and Turkey

With Malta and Turkey both joining Vienna based ICMPD in May, the International Centre for Migration Policy Development welcomes two new Member States. ICMPD has now 17 Member States all across Europe. In 2018 ICMPD is also celebrating the 25th anniversary of its founding and is looking into the future to try to see what it may hold in terms of migration and mobility of people.

May 29, 2018

Vienna's Attractiveness as a Location for Business Continues to Grow

For the sixth year in a row, Vienna recorded the highest number of companies settling in the city. After Vienna had already achieved a record figure in the previous year with 178 international new additions, this was again exceeded last year with 191 new companies, which is an increase of 13%. These business establishments together are responsible for investments totalling €537 million and 1,087 new jobs. There are 344 new foreign invested businesses throughout Austria. German companies remain the number one investors in Austria.

April 30, 2018

What does the Vienna-based ICMPD and its Director General Michael Spindelegger do?

The International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD) was founded in 1993 in Vienna on the initiative of Austria and Switzerland with the aim of making migration and mobility of people orderly, safe and regular, including through the implementation of planned and well managed migration policies. The aim is to counteract the often short-term thinking of governments so that sustainable solutions can be found and implemented in the medium and long term to combat and overcome the migration crisis. From this point of view, the tasks of the ICMPD have become extremely topical and important due to the refugee crisis.

April 26, 2018

Repatriation of Austrian Gold Reserves Nearing Completion

This year, and not in 2020, the OeNB Austrian National Bank is already concluding its repatriation campaign for half of its gold reserves. By the end of the year, 140 tonnes of gold are to be stored in Austria, with the other 140 tonnes remaining in London (84 tonnes) and Switzerland (56 tonnes).

March 30, 2018

The OSCE in 2030: Undivided Security in Europe Now More at Risk Than 10 Years Ago

In the Austrian National Defence Academy, the security issue "The OSCE in 2030: Undivided Security in Europe restored?" was discussed in the form of a public panel discussion. At the invitation of the International Institute for Peace (IIP), the Karl-Renner-Institut, the Scientific Cluster for Polemology and Legal Ethics, the FES Regional Office for Cooperation and Peace in Europe (ROCPE), the Austrian National Defence Academy and the ISP Institute for Security Policy, Hannes Swoboda as moderator and the panelists Thomas Greminger, Fyodor Lukyanov, Stephanie Liechtenstein, Alena Kupchyna discussed the hoped-for security policy development of Europe and the OSCE.

March 7, 2018

How do Russian Politicians and Oligarchs Withdraw their Money from Austria?

The Russian money nobility has begun to repatriate large amounts of its western-hoarded money back to Russia in order to deprive it of access by Western authorities. The countries of origin are above all Switzerland, but also Austria and Great Britain. Sberbank, Russia's largest and state-owned bank, speaks of an atypically high capital inflow to Russia. Within a few weeks, a tripling of such repatriation transactions took place compared to the same period of the previous year. The sum is hundreds of millions of dollars. The average transfer amount has increased within a year by 50% to 3 million dollars. This meets with the Kremlin's desire to repatriate Russian assets.

February 22, 2018

20 Years Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT): Ministerial Meeting at VIC

Marking the 20th anniversary of the signing of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT), a Ministerial Meeting was held at Vienna International Center. Hosting some 40 international organizations, Austria is a hub for the promotion of peace, safety and security, sustainable development and the fight against crime, drug abuse and terrorism.

June 20, 2016

Strabag to design and build for Siemens in Switzerland using BIM.5D®(with document)

STRABAG AG Switzerland, a subsidiary of STRABAG SE, has been awarded the contract to build an office building and a production building for Siemens in Zug, Switzerland. The contract, which has a value of around EUR 100 million, will be carried out by STRABAG as design-and-build contractor and main contractor, respectively. The client, Siemens Real Estate, chose STRABAG also for its proven competence in Building Information Modelling (BIM).

June 20, 2016

IMD Competitiveness Ranking: Austria Edged Up to Rank 24

According to the latest issue of the competitiveness ranking established by Swiss research facility Instituts für Management-Entwicklung (IMD), Austria edged up from rank 26 to 24 y/y in 2015.

May 31, 2016

Swiss-based Investor invests in Tractive Pet Wearables

Today a Swiss-based investor invested in excess of two million euros in Tractive, a fastgrowing Austrian business focusing on the development of pet wearables, such as GPS tracking devices for dogs and cats and pet fitness trackers. The investment will help the company to sustain an aggressive growth path and to further expand distribution.

February 4, 2016

Black Diamond Equipment Relocates European Headquarters from Switzerland to Austria

Producer of climbing, skiing, mountain sports equipment Black Diamond will move its European headquarters from Basel to Innsbruck. Tim Bantle has been appointed Managing Director. Black Diamond is actively recruiting staff for the new office, with approximately 35 jobs across sales, marketing, customer service, operations and finance. The new office is expected to be operational in May 2016. Black Diamond Equipment was established in 1989 and has its headquarters in Salt Lake City in Utah.

January 14, 2016

Austrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs: Council of Ministers Places 27 New Diplomats at Head of Embassies

The Council of Ministers of the Austrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has decided to place 27 new Austrian diplomats at head of Austrian Embassies worldwide.

December 10, 2015

How Can Exporters Benefit from the "Go-International Initiative" of the Austrian Chamber of Commerce?

Even in a challenging global economic environment, exports remain the driving force behind the Austrian economy. The go-international initiative of the Austrian Chamber of Commerce encourages companies to step across the border by offering advisory services, events and support, as well as making it easier for existing exporters to enter additional foreign markets.

October 19, 2015

Spindelegger Becomes Director General of Migration Organization ICMPD

Former Austrian Vice-Chancellor and Minister Michael Spindelegger has been elected Director Genera of the Vienna-based International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD). 15 Member States of the Organization elected him for five years, ICMPD announced. Most recently, he was president of the Agency for the Modernization of Ukraine of the Ukrainian oligarchs Dimitri Firtash.

October 1, 2015

PayLife Becomes SIX Payment Services

In September 2013, the Swiss financial services provider SIX acquired PayLife, the market leader for cashless payments in Austria, from the Austrian banks. With the acquisition and integration of PayLife SIX underlines its goal of driving international growth and its ambition to be among the leading European providers of card-based payments. Starting today, PayLife Bank GmbH is renamed SIX Payment Services ( Austria ) GmbH.

September 23, 2015

Bilderberg 2015: Full List of All 133 Participants

The full list of all 133 attendees to the top secret Bilderberg Group conference 2015 has been released (see below). The Austrians participating are René Benko, Oscar Bronner, Heinz Fischer, Alfred Gusenbauer, Erich Hampel, Wolfgang Hesoun, Gerhard Roiss, Rudolf Scholten and Karl Sevelda.

June 12, 2015 · Updated: June 12, 2015; 17:45

The Bilderberg Group - Background and Criticism

The first Bilderberg conference dates back to May 1954, when it was held at the Hotel de Bilderberg in Oosterbeek, Netherlands. Partly because of its working methods to ensure strict privacy, the Bilderberg Group has been criticised for its lack of transparency and accountability.

June 11, 2015

Bilderberg 2015: The "World Government" Meets in Austria

A select group of global elite is gathering today at the Interalpen-Hotel Tyrol in Telfs-Buchen, Austria. The 63rd Bilderberg conference is a super secret annual conference where they can discuss politics, economics and foreign policy freely. A total of around 140 participants from 22 countries have confirmed their attendance at the Bilderberg conference 2015. As ever, a diverse group of political leaders and experts from industry and finance have been invited. This year the list includes nine Austrians. Key talking points on the agenda include the Ukrainian crisis, Greece, Middle East and Terrorism (see detailed list below). Security is tight - participants as well as protesters and journalists will have to deal with the Austrian anti terror squad "Cobra". After 1979 it's the second time that the conference takes place in Austria.

June 11, 2015 · Updated: June 11, 2015; 19:00

Strabag Builds EUR 37 Million Power Plant in Switzerland

Strabag AG is building the Rhone Oberwald run-of-the-river hydroelectric plant in the Swiss canton of Valais. The contract value of € 37 million comprises the construction of the necessary tunnels, galleries and underground chambers.

June 5, 2015

Analysis: The Eurovision Song Contest 2015 in Vienna

The Eurovision Song Contest 2015 has been the 60th edition of the annual Eurovision Song Contest musical event. The contest took place in Vienna and followed Conchita Wurst's victory in the 2014 edition with her song "Rise Like a Phoenix". The song "Heroes" by Måns Zelmerlöw took the winning spot in the 60th Eurovision Song Contest in Vienna with 365 points. The 2016 Eurovision Song Contest will therefore be held in Sweden.

May 16, 2015 · Updated: May 28, 2015; 08:00

Background: The New "Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank"

The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) is regarded by some as a rival for the IMF, the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank (ADB), which are regarded as dominated by developed countries like the United States. AIIB is an international financial institution proposed by the government of China. The purpose of the multilateral development bank is to provide finance to infrastructure projects in the Asia region. Austria recently said, that it is "positive" and that it "now checks for a potential engagement".

March 27, 2015

Quality of Living Rankings: Vienna Tops the List Again

Vienna remaines at the top of the 2015 Quality of Living Rankings, boasting the best quality of living for expatriates. In the top 5 there are two other European cities, Zurich (place 2) and Munich (place 4). Also Auckland (3rd) and Vancouver (5th) are among the top five cities.

March 4, 2015

Global Peace Index: Austria is Third Most Peaceful Country

The latest Global Peace Index analyses the state of peace around the world. It identifies the most and least peaceful countries, trends in violence and conflict, and calculates the economic impact of violence. The top three most peaceful countries are Iceland, Denmark and Austria. Small and stable democracies make up the top ten most peaceful countries. New Zealand, Canada and Japan are the only non-European countries in the top ten.

March 4, 2015

List of National Days of the home countries of all foreign Missions and Delegations in Vienna, Austria

The Vindobona table below is an updated list of National Days of all nations, which belong to at least one of following categories: Foreign Missions and Delegations in Vienna, Austria; Diplomatic Corps and other representations in Austria; International Organizations in Vienna and Permanent Missions; Missions and Delegations to the OSCE.

February 11, 2015 · Updated: February 7, 2018; 08:12

Austria is Celebrating 60 Years of United Nations Membership in 2015

Austria became a member of the United Nations in 1955 and is celebrating 60 years of UN membership in 2015. 70 years ago, the United Nations were founded in San Francisco.

February 5, 2015

George Soros: "A New Policy to Rescue Ukraine"

Soros is calling on members of the European Union to behave as countries indirectly at war with Russia and to provide Ukraine with $50 billion to defend itself and kick-start political reforms. Russian President Vladimir Putin's imperial ambition has unintentionally brought into being a new Ukraine that is adamantly opposed to endemic corruption and inefficient government. By offering assistance, Europe can foster an open society in Ukraine and protect itself from Russian aggression.

January 22, 2015

Vienna Congress comsult 2015: "Power of Regions"

“Power of Regions“ is the topic of the Vienna Congress com•sult 2015 which is taking place today at Vienna's House of Industry. Distinguished participants from industry, politics and the business community such as F.W. de Klerk, Mohamed El Baradei, Author Benjamin R. Barber, Václav Klaus and Iain Begg are discussing the principle of regionality and its future in Europe.

January 20, 2015

Austria has EU-Wide Most Franc Loans

In absolute terms, Austria has the most franc foreign currency loans in the European Union.

January 19, 2015

Swiss Franc Soars as Currency Ceiling Discontinued

The Swiss franc has soared against the euro after Switzerland's central bank abandoned a ceiling it put in place a few years ago. Swiss franc loans in Austria make up more than 90 percent of the 25 billion euros in foreign-currency loans. Traders were stunned as the move was completely unexpected.

January 15, 2015

Ivica Dačić in Vienna: Serbia Takes Over OSCE Chairmanship from Switzerland

The new OSCE Chairperson, Serbia’s Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic, spoke today at the inaugural Permanent Council meeting of Serbia's OSCE Chairmanship Vienna. He revealed his Chairmanship priorities pledging to rebuild trust and confidence in the OSCE region of 57 participating states.

January 15, 2015

Serbian Foreign Minister Dačić to Visit Vienna

The new OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, Serbian Foreign Minister Dačić will visit Vienna on Thursday. He will outline the Serbian Chairmanship’s priorities to the OSCE Permanent Council*.

January 13, 2015

Secretary of State John Kerry at the OSCE Ministerial Plenary Session

"It is not our design or desire that we see a Russia isolated through its own actions. In fact, we are convinced that Moscow could rebuild trust and relationships if it simply helps to calm turbulent waters, if it takes steps now to implement the Minsk protocol."

December 5, 2014

Voestalpine to Supply Linepipe Plates for the Second South Stream Pipeline

This year sees the voestalpine Group securing its third major contract in the pipeline business. Following the first, now completed, contract for the Russian-European pipeline project South Stream, and for Rota 3, a pipeline project in Brazil, voestalpine will deliver 120,000 tons of sour-gas-resistant, high-strength linepipe plates for the second South Stream pipeline by spring 2015. The South Stream contract is not affected by sanctions. Further negotiations are also currently underway concerning extremely challenging pipeline projects.

September 5, 2014
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