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Old 08.04.2020, 07:02
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Employment for non EU/EFTA citizens

Hi,

As I am willing to move to Switzerland, I wanted to confirm the answers to a few questions related to employment for non EU/EFTA citizens.

Q1: I have read that several years of experience is needed for non EU/EFTA to get employed in Switzerland. So is this a myth or is this actually a fact?

Q2: How many years of experience can several years be?
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Old 08.04.2020, 08:38
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Re: Employment for non EU/EFTA citizens

Zainoo, as has been explained in your other threads on this topic, a non-EU citizen is at the bottom of the totem pole when it comes to permits.

Swiss immigration law says that an employer must first demonstrate that no CH or EU citizen is available to take the job. Unless the job is in a highly specialised industry or niche or requires highly specialised qualifications, this regulation poses a pretty high barrier.

The process of hiring a non-EU employee can be long and expensive, a burden some employers are not keen to pursue if not strictly necessary. The law is designed exactly to throw up a roadblock to additional non-EU immigration.

Resident/EU labor market search aside, I don't think anyone can give you a check list of what it takes to be considered sufficiently expert to warrant a permit. Anecdotes might suggest cases are considered individually.

While no one knows what the future holds, looking at the current situation, I would guess that it will be even harder to immigrate in the next months/year or so, as the crisis has thrown many more people out of work. I suspect there will be increased social pressure to employ people aready here rather than bringing new people in. This is certainly not a easy time to a non-EU, non-niche , non-expert to try to immigrate here.

Also, be aware that in current political climate there is a fair amount of anti-immigrant sentiment.

---

Why do you want to move to Switzerland? If by chance for a non-employment reason, such as marriage, that actually might be an easier route.

---

A suggestion for clarity's sake:

It might be better to keep all your questions on this topic in one thread.
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Old 08.04.2020, 09:27
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Thank you for your help. I was wanting to move to Switzerland for employment purposes.

I will be sure to post all my questions on this one thread from now on. Thanks for letting me know

Last edited by 3Wishes; 10.04.2020 at 22:37. Reason: merging consecutive replies
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Old 08.04.2020, 09:35
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Re: Employment for non EU/EFTA citizens

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Thank you for your help. I was wanting to move to Switzerland for employment purposes.
Why for employment purposes?

I know lots of Swiss who move to Australia for employment purposes.

Tom
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Old 08.04.2020, 10:46
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Re: Employment for non EU/EFTA citizens

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Hi,

As I am willing to move to Switzerland, I wanted to confirm the answers to a few questions related to employment for non EU/EFTA citizens.

Q1: I have read that several years of experience is needed for non EU/EFTA to get employed in Switzerland. So is this a myth or is this actually a fact?

Q2: How many years of experience can several years be?
You may be willing to move to Switzerland - a lot of people are - but what is the skill / expertise you're offering Switzerland? Without this, you've almost no chance, for reasons explained to you. Best route may be for you to marry a Swiss person, though be aware that they may be looking for an Australian to marry so that they can settle in Australia. That would be a bit annoying for you.
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Old 08.04.2020, 10:49
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Re: Employment for non EU/EFTA citizens

At the moment, the working situation in Switzerland is very difficult.



Before this year, you needed a specialist job, high qualifications, experience, and an employer that can prove that there is no-one in Switzerland, EU or UK that can do the job... then 'maybe' the work permit would be approved, if you match all the requirements *and* the salary offered was considered acceptable.


The only way forward is to find an employer that is willing to go through the process of making you a job offer and then getting a work permit. Under the current situation, though, very few or no new permits are being processed. You cannot enter Switzerland or indeed most of Europe unless you are a citizen or have a residency permit.


I have no idea if employers in general are likely to keep looking for new staff under the current circumstances. At the moment, for the work I am looking for, there is no hiring as the whole industry is going to be severely impacted if there is unemployment across-the-board in the short and medium term.



To be a specialist or expert, you need experience, and those are the sort of jobs that go to Non-EU workers who are coming in to Switzerland to work for the first time, who are not married to a European passport holder.
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Old 08.04.2020, 11:20
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Re: Employment for non EU/EFTA citizens

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Hi,

As I am willing to move to Switzerland, I wanted to confirm the answers to a few questions related to employment for non EU/EFTA citizens.

Q1: I have read that several years of experience is needed for non EU/EFTA to get employed in Switzerland. So is this a myth or is this actually a fact?

Q2: How many years of experience can several years be?
It's not as simple as having several years of experience in a profession; it depends on what your area of expertise is in. You might have 10 years of experience in an area which is pretty useless in CH because your skills won't translate to the country.

OTOH, you can have 1 year of experience in a highly specific area where it is difficult to find people from inside CH or even EU and then you will have a chance.

If you are in IT for example, there are jobs and skills are transferable but if the job can be done by anyone, they won't bother hiring someone non-EU. If you believe, you have the skills to get into Google, no problem, pass their interviews and they will do the paperwork to hire you.

One of the ways people can come and work here is working remotely (or outsourced) for a company in CH and then the company (I have seen several people from India working for banks here) can apply to get you a permit but even then things are difficult.

Still, there are people arriving every day from non-EU countries which means it is not an impossible task but not as easy as hiring someone from the EU.
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Old 08.04.2020, 11:45
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Re: Employment for non EU/EFTA citizens

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Hi,

As I am willing to move to Switzerland, I wanted to confirm the answers to a few questions related to employment for non EU/EFTA citizens.

Q1: I have read that several years of experience is needed for non EU/EFTA to get employed in Switzerland. So is this a myth or is this actually a fact?

Q2: How many years of experience can several years be?
Years of experience is not the deciding factor for a work permit. The deciding factor is an employer willing to do the paperwork for your work permit in order to be hired.

If you have something that a employer needs, the experience and knowledge of local language become much less relevant. So, you need to find that spot where your skills are needed www.jobs.ch
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Old 10.04.2020, 20:53
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Re: Employment for non EU/EFTA citizens

I have done some research online which shows that Switzerland has one of the highest salaries in the world. Australia pays well but the taxes eat a big amount of the money, which is really annoying. I had another question:

As Switzerland has greater acceptance for EU citizens, if I get citizenship from an EU country like Portugal and then migrate to Switzerland, would that acknowledge me with the same value as an EU citizen (e.g. greater acceptance in jobs than non EU citizens, and 5 years to become a citizen etc.)?
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Old 10.04.2020, 20:59
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Re: Employment for non EU/EFTA citizens

Yes, definitely. If you can obtain an EU citizenship, that'll open the doors to you in Switzerland. After the Corona days.
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Old 10.04.2020, 21:22
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Re: Employment for non EU/EFTA citizens

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I have done some research online which shows that Switzerland has one of the highest salaries in the world.
You need to look at the Swiss cost of living. Taxes may be relatively low, but you need to add on the cost of health insurance. The cost of rental accommodation will often cost you more than a third of that Ďhighest salariesí The cost of a weekly shopping basket would stagger people in our neighbouring countries.

Switzerland is not the fiscal paradise you imagine.
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Old 10.04.2020, 21:27
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Re: Employment for non EU/EFTA citizens

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and 5 years to become a citizen etc.)?
Even with an EU passport you won't get citizenship in 5 years (unless you marry a Swiss person), only a C-permit.
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Old 10.04.2020, 21:27
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Re: Employment for non EU/EFTA citizens

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I have done some research online which shows that Switzerland has one of the highest salaries in the world. Australia pays well but the taxes eat a big amount of the money, which is really annoying. I had another question:

As Switzerland has greater acceptance for EU citizens, if I get citizenship from an EU country like Portugal and then migrate to Switzerland, would that acknowledge me with the same value as an EU citizen (e.g. greater acceptance in jobs than non EU citizens, and 5 years to become a citizen etc.)?
Salaries are high but so are expenses. Just because it looks like a lot of money doesnít mean youíll actually live a better life.

If your looking to move here only because you have a higher (on paper) salary and you donít have the specialization to get a company to sponsor your work permit, Itís maybe not going to be the El Dorado you think it is.
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Old 10.04.2020, 22:00
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Re: Employment for non EU/EFTA citizens

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Salaries are high but so are expenses. Just because it looks like a lot of money doesnít mean youíll actually live a better life.

If your looking to move here only because you have a higher (on paper) salary and you donít have the specialization to get a company to sponsor your work permit, Itís maybe not going to be the El Dorado you think it is.
The expenses are a matter want do you need and what is important for you.
If you don't need a car, don't like eating out, stay away from expensive meat products or don't have an expensive mobile subscription, you can save a lot of money.
Currently shopping outside switzerland is not possible, if the borders will be open again, you can save a lot.
The swiss tax system prefers single households, the costs of raising a child and childcare here in switzerland are very expensive .
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Old 10.04.2020, 22:15
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Re: Employment for non EU/EFTA citizens

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The expenses are a matter want do you need and what is important for you.
If you don't need a car, don't like eating out, stay away from expensive meat products or don't have an expensive mobile subscription, you can save a lot of money.
Currently shopping outside switzerland is not possible, if the borders will be open again, you can save a lot.
The swiss tax system prefers single households, the costs of raising a child and childcare here in switzerland are very expensive .
Of course! But people can do all that in their home countries as well. I doubt those who write they saw Switzerland had the highest salaries in the world are not looking to move 1/2 around the world to find the best ways to save money on groceries.
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Old 10.04.2020, 22:29
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Re: Employment for non EU/EFTA citizens

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Of course! But people can do all that in their home countries as well.
Well, that depends on the home country. There are many items in a regular Swiss budget which, for someone from some other countries, are rank luxuries. So, for somone willing to live frugally here, it is possible to set aside a greater proportion of one's disposable Swiss income that it is in some other countries.
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Old 11.04.2020, 05:07
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Re: Employment for non EU/EFTA citizens

Hi again, as they are more acceptable towards EU citizens, if I get citizenship from a country like Portugal and then go to Switzerland, would it be an easier pathway for me? (more job opportunity, 5 years permit C time instead of 10 years etc.)
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Old 11.04.2020, 16:14
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Re: Employment for non EU/EFTA citizens

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Hi again, as they are more acceptable towards EU citizens, if I get citizenship from a country like Portugal and then go to Switzerland, would it be an easier pathway for me? (more job opportunity, 5 years permit C time instead of 10 years etc.)
But if you are none EU, how is it going to be easier to satisfy the same labour market rules from an EU country? For example in Ireland the rules are even stricter because only a small percentage of an employer's workforce may be none EU/EEA/CH... Do you have some special circumstances that would allow you to move to Portugal?
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Old 12.04.2020, 02:31
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Re: Employment for non EU/EFTA citizens

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Hi again, as they are more acceptable towards EU citizens, if I get citizenship from a country like Portugal and then go to Switzerland, would it be an easier pathway for me? (more job opportunity, 5 years permit C time instead of 10 years etc.)
From the perspective of the Swiss immigration authorities, there is a world of difference between "EU" and "non-EU".

If you have a non-EU citizenship,
to be allowed to work in Switzerland, you need to prove that you have very special skills and working experience. A potential Swiss employer would have to prove that they looked for an employee in Switzerland and through all of the EU, but could not find anyone suitable, and that you are the only candidate they could find, and why they really need to employ someone with your profile. Obviously, this can be done, as there are, indeed, non-EU people living and working here. But it is not an easy process, and even when well qualified, it is not guranteed that a non-EU foreigner will be given a permit.

If you have EU citizenship,
it is much, much easier to come and work in Switzerland. An EU citizen can apply for a job, and once he/she has found one and has a valid contract, can simply travel into Switzerland, and go to the right office, and register as living here, and they will be issued with a permit, automatically.

If you aim to obtain EU citizenship, then you might find it useful to read through the permit and naturalisation rules of each country, individually, because they are all different.

Last edited by doropfiz; 12.04.2020 at 02:47.
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Old 12.04.2020, 02:46
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Re: Employment for non EU/EFTA citizens

We may find that a lot of regulations (or the way they are applied) change during or after the Corona-crisis.

A few weeks ago, the Swiss authorities announced a moratorium for all permit appliations. They are simply not processing them. We don't know how long it will take before they even consider any applications.

It is already clear that Switzerland's economy (and of course, everywhere else, too) has been damaged by the crisis, but it is not yet known to what extent. Many business are going to be forced to close. There are already many more unemployed people. All of this will make it more difficult for someone from outside to get a new permit.

As this phenomenon is affecting the whole world, I suppose it must be similar, where you are, too.

Everything is unclear until the worst of the Corona-crisis is over. If you hope to move to an EU-country or to Switzerland, here are some suggestions of what you could do, both to see whether the idea is realistic and all, and to improve your chances, from where you are now, are:
  • if you already have a qualification, get very detailed and full documentation about it, in case you can later try to get it recognised in the new country
  • get formal qualifications that are needed in the new country
  • become a niche specialist in an area needed in the new country
  • read up about the rules of each EU country, and Switzerland, for obtaining a permit, and for qualifying to naturalise
  • as far as possible, build professional and perhaps private networks in your field and in your areas of interest, in the countries you are considering
  • improve your language skills, in English, and in the language (or languages) of the country (or country) to which you hope to move
  • work out different ways to run your budget, and read up about suggested or typical budgets, of income, taxes, medical inaurance and living expenses in Switzerland and other countries
  • learn a lot of small, everyday life skills (cooking, cleaning, sewing, how to use a drill, basic woodwork, how to wash/mend/iron your clothes, how to grow vegetables, how to fix a bicycle, how to cut your own hair) because the more of these things you know how to do, the more money you can save, where you are now, but especially if you ever do manage to move to Switzerland.
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