Swiss president meets Portugal’s president and prime minister

Press releases, 12.06.2024

President Viola Amherd met Portugal’s President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa and Prime Minister Luís Montenegro on Wednesday, 12 June. The talks in Bern focused on the countries’ close bilateral relations, European policy, the upcoming summit on peace in Ukraine and cooperation between Switzerland and Portugal at multilateral level.

Relations between Switzerland and Portugal are based on strong traditional ties and, since the Carnation Revolution of 1974, on shared democratic values and dynamic dialogue. Around 260,000 Portuguese nationals currently live in Switzerland, making them the third-largest group of foreigners in the country. Meanwhile, around 7,000 Swiss nationals live in Portugal. Economic relations are also strong and varied. There are opportunities in a number of fields, from digitalisation to renewable energies.

In addition to President Amherd, Federal Councillor Ignazio Cassis, Head of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, also took part in the discussions with President Rebelo de Sousa and Prime Minister Montenegro.

In addition to bilateral relations, Ms Amherd and her dialogue partners discussed European policy. On the agenda were the ongoing negotiations between Switzerland and the European Union (EU). The Swiss side reaffirmed its intention to find solutions with the EU in order to stabilise and pursue the bilateral path to the benefit of both sides.

Another key topic was the upcoming summit on peace in Ukraine, which Switzerland is organising on the Bürgenstock at the weekend. Around 90 countries have already confirmed their participation. Portugal will be represented by President Rebelo de Sousa and the country’s foreign minister, Paulo Rangel. At the conference, all participating states will be able to contribute their ideas and visions for a just and lasting peace in Ukraine. The political process of reconstruction, which was launched in 2022 with the Ukraine Recovery Conference (URC) in Lugano and will continue this week with a URC in Berlin, was also discussed.

Other multilateral issues were also discussed, including Switzerland and Portugal’s work in the UN, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) and the Council of Europe, and the situation in the Middle East.

Further information:

Bilateral relations Switzerland–Portugal

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