Swiss voters back Netflix tax and Frontex funding boost
Swiss citizens approved a tax on streaming services and an increase in funding for the European border agency Frontex in a referendum held on Sunday, May 15.
The first proposal, commonly known as Lex Netflix in Switzerland, would see streaming services invest 4% of their revenue into Swiss film-making, in line with requirements already in place for national television broadcasters. The proposal was supported by 58.42% of the voters, while 41.58% voted against it.
The second proposal involved raising Switzerland’s annual contribution to the Frontex border agency to $61 million from $24 million. 71.48% of voters backed the increase and 28.52% opposed it. Earlier, the Swiss government expressed concern that a failure to provide funding could result in Switzerland being excluded from the Schengen treaty.
Furthermore, Swiss voters approved a law establishing that all citizens would be a possible source of organ donations when they die unless they explicitly opt out. Earlier, potential organ donors were required to give consent during their lifetime. It was supported by 60.2% of the vote, whereas 39.8% of voters opposed it.
Germany and Austria turn back to coal power
As Russia cuts natural gas supply to Europe, many EU countries such as Germany and Austria are forced to go back to coal power. The German government is also planning an additional credit line of €15 billion to secure gas for the winter. Amid the gas squeeze, European green energy transition plans have been put on the back burner.
15:24 2022-07-06 UTC+00
Ex-employees sue Musk for mass layoffs
Two former Tesla employees have recently sued Elon Musk for mass layoffs. Their colleagues who also suffered the termination may soon follow suit. The workers accused Tesla’s management of violating the federal law that requires US employers to give notice before terminating workers.
14:10 2022-07-06 UTC+00
More sanctions on Kremlin to follow?
The White House pins hope on its policy of sanctions to cripple the Russian economy. Washington has already imposed a vast array of severe economic restrictions. Currently, the US administration voices concerns about the overuse of this lever which seems to be the only option for stepping up pressure on the Kremlin.
10:52 2022-07-06 UTC+00
Germany to last 2.5 months without Russian gas
Despite possible headwinds in the future, Germany remains faithful to its beliefs and principles. The common position of the European Union, the United States, and the vast majority of the world's countries on Russia is unwavering, even taking into account energy shortages.The German authorities are well aware of the complexity of the situation amid an impending cold winter.
10:31 2022-07-06 UTC+00
Angela Merkel: gas is not weapon
Former German chancellor Angela Merkel has refuted all claims that Russia is using the Nord Stream 2 as a weapon and instrument to affect other countries from a political point of view.The former chancellor stated that Russia had no intention to use the Nord Stream 2 as a weapon.
14:09 2022-07-05 UTC+00
Germany to ditch Russian energy imports, albeit at high cost
For Germany, the core of the current energy policy is phasing out its dependence on Russian oil and gas. At the recent EU summit in Brussels, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz reported on the state of affairs in cutting ties with Russian energy suppliers.
12:24 2022-07-05 UTC+00