Sonntag, 8. Februar 2009

Schweiz sagt JA zu Osteuropa

Die Schweiz hat bei einer Volksabstimmung der Erweiterung der Personenfreizügigkeit auf die neuen osteuropäischen EU-Mitglieder Rumänien und Bulgarien überraschend klar zugestimmt.


Abstimmungsresultat nach Kantonen


Die Schweiz ist dabei eines der ganz wenigen Länder Europa's, welche über so heikle Fragen in Zeiten der Wirtschaftskrise mit zunehmendem Protektionismus direkte Volksabstimmungen durchführt. Nach der Abstimmung dürfen nun bald auch Rumänen und Bulgaren zum Arbeiten in die Schweiz reisen. Also ein klares JA der Schweiz zu Osteuropa!


Plakat gegen die Erweiterung der Personenfreizügigkeit

Das klare Ergebnis der Abstimmung nach einem sehr harten Abstimmungskampf in Zeiten der Wirtschaftskrise und mit Plakaten an der Grenze des guten Geschmacks kommt einer kleinen Sensation gleich. Ein Ablehnung wäre einer Katastrophe gleichgekommen und bisher erzielte bilaterale Abkommen zwischen der Schweiz und der EU wie der erst kürzliche Beitritt zum Schengen Abkommen wären von der EU aufgekündigt worden. Ich bin sehr stolz auf den weisen Entscheid des Schweizer Volkes!

Kommentare:

Andreas hat gesagt…

Gott sei Dank ... Nicht auszudenken, was bei einem Nein passiert wäre

Podvalov hat gesagt…

Ein guter Kommentar auf dem Spiegel Online zu den Schweizern als verlässliche Europäer:

http://www.spiegel.de/politik/ausland/0,1518,606293,00.html

Anonym hat gesagt…

Mich würde auch zu vielen Sachen die Meinung des deutschen Volkes interessieren, aber leider sind in Deutschland Volksabstimmungen sehr rar gesäht! Jedenfalls könnt ihr Schweizer stolz auf euch sein!
Iris

Anonym hat gesagt…

Ich wollte hiermit DANKE sagen.
Für den tollen Blog, den ich immer wieder gerne lese. Ich bin in Kiew geboren und finde es toll, die Stadt mit den Augen eines Westeuropäers zu sehen :)

Morgen früh lande ich in Kiew und freue mich sehr drauf.
PS: wohne ganz in der Nähe von dir :)

Weiter so und vielen Dank

Liana aus Köln

Anonym hat gesagt…

By ALAN CULLISON

The International Monetary Fund is likely to suspend loan payments to Ukraine, a move that would further push the government toward Moscow for aid and exacerbate a feud between top leaders in Kiev.

Ukraine is failing to meet the terms of its loan deal with the IMF, and likely won't get the next installment this month, according to a person close to talks between the fund and the government in Kiev.
[Ukraine Economic Crisis]

Faced with a cash shortage, Kiev is passing the hat around to global powers. Talks were held in Moscow last week over a $5 billion loan to help plug Ukraine's budget deficit.

Ukraine Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko said her government also sent letters to the U.S., European Union, China and Japan, and that "Russia is ready to help with the credit agreement's signing."

President Viktor Yushchenko criticized the talks with Moscow. "It's a dangerous policy and poses a threat to Ukraine's national interests," he said.

The U.S. State Department said it was looking into reports of Ukraine's request for aid.

Ukraine has been hit by falling prices of metals and fertilizers, its main exports. Infighting between Mr. Yushchenko and Ms. Tymoshenko has led to a policy deadlock.
[Yulia Tymoshenko] Associated Press

Ukraine parliamentarians watch results of a no-confidence vote against Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, center. The motion was rejected.

The deficit has been a sticking point in talks with the IMF on the release of the second installment of a $16.4 billion loan that it agreed to extend to Ukraine last year. The IMF released the first $4.5 billion tranche in November and had made further disbursements contingent on Ukraine reducing the budget shortfall and making progress on bank restructuring.

Ms. Tymoshenko's government's 2009 budget is forecast to show a deficit of 3% of gross domestic product.

Last week, an IMF mission monitoring Kiev's progress left without an agreement with the government that would have paved the way for disbursing the next loan tranche. Ceyla Pazarbasioglu, assistant director of the European Department of the IMF, said "further actions, including structural fiscal measures, are needed for us to recommend completion of the review."
—James Marson and Louise Radnofsky contributed to this article

Anonym hat gesagt…

E-Voting: Auslandschweizer müssen sich ein Jahr länger gedulden
Von Thomas Schenk.

Die Auslandschweizer müssen ein Jahr länger warten, bis sie elektronisch abstimmen können. Die Einführung im Kanton erfolgt erst 2010.
E-Voting: Für Auslandschweizer nicht vor 2010.

E-Voting: Für Auslandschweizer nicht vor 2010. (Bild: Keystone)
Artikel zum Thema

* E-Voting: Zürcher sind Internet-Muffel

Schweizer, die im Ausland leben, drängen seit langem darauf, dass E-Voting möglichst rasch eingeführt wird. Probleme, wie sie bei der Postzustellung möglich sind, treten über das Internet nicht auf. Doch nun droht eine Verzögerung um ein Jahr. Zürcherinnen und Zürcher, die im Ausland leben, können erst 2010 elektronisch abstimmen. «Eigentlich wollten wir damit schon dieses Jahr starten, doch nun verzögert sich die Einführung», sagt der E-Voting-Projektleiter des Kantons, Felix Bosshard vom Statistischen Amt. Als Ziel gibt er den 13. Juni des nächsten Jahres an.

Neuenburg erheblich schneller

Weshalb müssen sich die Auslandschweizer, die im Kanton Zürich registriert sind, länger gedulden? «Damit Auslandschweizer abstimmen können, müssen die Gemeinden ihre Register anpassen», sagt Bosshard. «Zudem sind Softwareanpassungen nötig, und das braucht seine Zeit.» Andere Kantone sind erheblich schneller: Im Kanton Neuenburg konnten die Auslandschweizer im Juni 2008 erstmal elektronisch abstimmen.

Von der Verzögerung sind rund 11'000 Auslandschweizer betroffen. So viele Personen sind in den 13 Gemeinden im Kanton gemeldet, die beim Pilotprojekt E-Voting mitmachen. Die meisten davon sind in Zürich und Winterthur eingeschrieben, im Kreis 1 beziehungsweise in der Altstadt. Aus diesem Grund wurden diese Stadtteile bei der Abstimmung vom letzten Wochenende gezielt in das E-Voting einbezogen. Nun warten sie ein Jahr länger.

Zwei Klassen von Schweizern

Gewisse Auslandschweizer brauchen noch mehr Geduld. E-Voting schafft nämlich zwei Klassen von Schweizern: Solche, die elektronisch stimmen dürfen, und solche, denen dies verwehrt bleibt. Der Grund für diese Ungleichbehandlung liegt im Stimmgeheimnis. «Ist dieses nicht gewährt, dürfen keine elektronischen Abstimmungen durchgeführt werden», erklärt Projektleiter Bosshard. Davon betroffen sind Staaten wie China oder Burma, wo der Internetverkehr der Bewohner überwacht wird. (Tagesanzeiger.ch/Newsnetz)

Erstellt: 11.02.2009, 16:02 Uhr

Anonym hat gesagt…

Global downturn hammers Ukraine's economy
Ukrainians are hurting as gas prices soar, unemployment rises, and currency value plummets.
By Fred Weir | Correspondent of The Christian Science Monitor

from the February 6, 2009 edition

Gostomel, Ukraine - The yard of the Vetropack factory in this small provincial town is piled high with unsold production.

None of the plant's 750 workers has been laid off yet, mainly because management is reluctant to take the costly decision to shut down any of the three glass furnaces that churn out tens of thousands of bottles each day. But space on the factory grounds is running out – and Ukraine's economic crisis just looks to be getting worse.

"Some of our best customers are unable to pay, and demand is dropping off sharply," says Alexander Petrov, information manager of the Swiss-owned company, one of Ukraine's biggest glass producers. "We've been hit by a double whammy, because of rising gas prices and the sharp devaluation of the Ukrainian hryvna."

The fact that even Vetropack – an ultramodern facility with a much-needed product – is facing serious challenges speaks volumes about the perilous state of Ukraine's economy.

The global downturn is hammering the export-oriented Soviet-era steel and chemical industries that account for 30 percent of Ukraine's gross domestic product. Its financial system is in chaos and, some experts warn, facing imminent default. The bank accounts of millions of Ukrainians have been frozen, unemployment is spiraling, the hryvna has lost half its value since last summer, and the price the country has to pay for its main energy source, Russian gas, has just doubled.

Perhaps worst of all, the political system is paralyzed, with the populist Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko locked in a bureaucratic war with liberal President Viktor Yushchenko.

"The situation is deteriorating very badly, and it's quite possible that people could be taking to the streets in mass protests by spring if something doesn't change for the better soon," says Oleksiy Kolomiyets, president of the independent Center for European and Transatlantic Studies in Kiev. "With the sharp increases in the price of gas, following the recent conflict with Russia, it might be impossible for many of our industries to survive. Worst of all, the politicians are blaming each other instead of working together to find a way out of the crisis."

According to a deal signed last month between Ms. Tymoshenko and Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, Ukraine will pay $360 per thousand cubic meters of Russian gas in the first quarter of 2009, up from an average of $180 last year. Even before that blow, Ukraine's energy-intensive steel industry reported a 53 percent slump in exports in the second half of 2008. Most of the country's chemical plants were reporting major slowdowns and 80 percent of construction projects in Kiev, Ukraine's formerly prosperous capital, have ground to a halt, according to the English-language Kyiv Post.

The accord has been challenged by Mr. Yushchenko, whose spokesman said that Kiev will seek to renegotiate the contract, but will not renew the gas war with Moscow, which left 18 European nations without gas for two weeks.

"This crisis has touched almost everyone already," says Yury Danilenko, a worker in Vetropack's mold shop. Though he's happy he's still working, he says his wife recently lost her job as a service worker, the family's bank account is frozen, and many neighbors are unemployed. "I'm really worried about the future. We haven't seen anything like this before," he says.

Officially, unemployment is around 5 percent. But that greatly understates the problem, says Volodymyr Gryshchenko, head of the Federation of Employers, whose members employ about a third of the country's workforce. "Employers are trying to find ways to avoid firing workers outright, and so they're cutting hours or sending workers on unpaid leave," which doesn't show on official unemployment rolls, he says.

Ukraine's chemical industry, which employs hundreds of thousands, continues working even though orders have fallen drastically because, he says, "if you shut down a chemical plant it is extremely difficult and expensive to restart it." But if gas prices remain high, he adds, "our chemical enterprises will no longer be competitive."

In December, amid the collapse of some of the country's leading banks, Ukraine's central bank ordered all savings deposits frozen in a bid to prevent a panic. That move may have been successful, but many citizens watching the hryvna dive and unable to get at their money are crying foul.

Those hit the hardest are the country's fledgling middle class, whose political ideals tend to be liberal and who were quickest to adopt modern economic habits, such as trusting banks and taking out consumer loans, says Viktor Nebozhenko, director of Ukrainian Barometer, an independent Kiev think tank.

He adds that he sometimes wishes he'd stuck to the Soviet-era habit of keeping his cash in a mattress. "Middle-class disillusionment is very dangerous, because these are the people most capable of self-organization," he says. "Everyone is suffering from this banking crisis, and some are getting very angry."

"As long as the factory is working, I can keep up with my loan payments for house and car," says Yelena Brexler, who works near a mechanized glass blower that spins out hundreds of red-hot bottles per hour at Vetropack. "But banks are raising loan costs, things are getting harder, and we're all very concerned."

Some experts warn that Ukraine, which has already received $16.5 billion in emergency funding from the International Monetary Fund, could default on its national debt, which could have catastrophic political consequences.

"We are in a pre-default situation, and it looks like Ukraine has already lost its chances to reform its economy and industry," says Vadim Karasyov, director of the independent Global Strategies Institute in Kiev. "The worst thing is, people are starting to feel disillusionment in the idea of democracy itself. The demand for a strong hand, to fix this mess, is growing."