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Today in Switzerland: A roundup of the latest news on Friday

Today in Switzerland: A roundup of the latest news on Friday
Border traffic slowdown is expected when toll is installed. Photo by Fabrice Coffrini / AFP
Find out what's going on today in Switzerland with The Local's short roundup of the news.

If you suspect you have Covid, get a PCR test

Over 60,000 people in Switzerland who recovered from coronavirus aren’t able to get a Covid certificate if their contamination was detected with an antigen test. In this respect, health authorities are following EU recommendations.

So if you have to get a test because you think you may have caught the virus, make sure you ask for a PCR, rather than antigen test, the Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH) advised on Thursday.

This will ensure that you are able to get the Covid certificate later on.

READ MORE: UPDATE: Swiss government rules antigen tests invalid for Covid health pass

Women in Switzerland still earn less than men

The income earned by women in Switzerland is lower than that of men across all salary brackets and most professions, according to new data from the Federal Statistical Office (FSO).

These are some of the key findings:

  • 31 percent of men working full time received a gross salary of over 104,000 francs annually, compared to only 18 percent of women.
  • 30 percent of men pocket between 78,000 and 104,000 francs, against 22 percent of women.
  • Almost 40 percent of women earned between 52,000 and 78,000 francs — considered a low wage for full-time work — compared to 30 percent of men.
  • 12 percent of women receive an even lower salary of between 26,000 and 52,000 francs, against 5 percent of men.

Frost destroys around 85 percent of the Valais apricot harvest

The canton of Valais is known for its abundance of apricot orchards, but sub-zero temperatures during several nights in early April caused greater damage to the fruit trees than initially estimated.

Around 85 percent of the harvest is likely to be lost.

“We expect that only about 15 percent of the usual amount of apricots can be harvested,” said Georg Bregy from the Valais Agriculture Office. “That is extraordinarily little”.

This also means there will be far less of the this fruit available for Swiss consumers this year.

There will be shortage of Valais apricots this year. Photo by Valais Tourisme

Cross-border workers from France to pay toll to come to Geneva

A toll to be installed on a motorway between French municipalities of Annemasse and Saint-Julien means that an estimated 50,000 drivers who use this section of the road each day — mostly those commuting to their jobs in Geneva — will have to pay to enter Switzerland.

This may have an impact on the Geneva-bound traffic, as motorists “will clog the secondary route network, to save money the travel time”, said Yves Gerber, director of the Geneva section of Touring Clud Suisse (TCS).

In order to limit this risk, authorities in Haute-Savoie, the region where the two French towns are located,  is proposing to improve access to customs at Bardonnex.

And speaking of cross-border commuters…

New government data shows that the 343,000 cross-border employees constitute almost 7 percent of Switzerland’s total workforce — mostly in Ticino (29 percent) and in Geneva (24).

The proportion of cross-border workers is also high in the cantons of Jura (19 percent), Basel-City (18 percent), Basel-Country (14 percent) and Neuchâtel (12 percent).

If you have any questions about life in Switzerland, ideas for articles or news tips for The Local please get in touch with us at [email protected]


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