Switzerland, a small nation of 8.6 million at the heart of Europe, is surrounded by European Union countries. While it has chosen to remain outside the 27-nation bloc, it has maintained a close relationship with the EU, which is by far its largest trading partner. About two-thirds of Swiss imports come from the bloc, while half of the country’s exports go to the EU. An estimated 1.4 million EU nationals live in Switzerland, while 450,000 Swiss citizens are residents in EU countries. No fewer than 120 deals between Brussels and Bern were concluded over recent decades, ranging from agriculture to police cooperation. So why has the Swiss government just pulled out of a seven-year negotiation with the EU to modernise the pair’s relationship? Read More.