UK and Switzerland – agreement on police cooperation
The UK and Switzerland have signed a bilateral treaty [TS No.2/2022] to enhance cooperation and coordination between the law enforcement authorities of the UK and Switzerland.
The treaty covers all forms of serious and organised crime and terrorism, focusing on economic crime, corruption and fraud. Its key function is to facilitate the exchange of information and intelligence to assist investigations and tackle crime.
The agreement also commits both parties to share good practice, undertake joint training exercises and measures, and other forms of practical cooperation.
This includes innovative methods to tackle crime, such as:
- the development of technology to enable fast and efficient data sharing
- the use of public-private partnerships to facilitate intelligence flows between public and private sector actors (for example, financial institutions)
The agreement also contains provisions on important areas of cooperation, such as the protection and treatment of witnesses and victims, and mutual assistance in serious disasters and crises.
In 2019, the UK and Switzerland signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Strengthening Police and Other Law Enforcement Cooperation, Combating and Preventing Crime and Terrorism. The MoU – between the Home Office and the Swiss Federal Department for Justice and Police – signalled the joint intention to explore more formal arrangements to further enhance police cooperation between law enforcement partners in the future, to combat shared threats from crime and terrorism.
This treaty builds on the MoU by formalising and further strengthening UK-Swiss arrangements for law enforcement cooperation. This treaty stands separate from UK-EU law enforcement arrangements and will strengthen the ability to cooperate effectively with a key international partner outside of EU structures.