US seeks pharmaceutical deal with Switzerland to ease approvals

Development comes amid stalled trade talks between the US and Swiss

The Biden administration wants to reach a narrow sectoral trade agreement with the Swiss pharmaceutical industry, the US ambassador to Switzerland told the newspaper Blick am Sonntag.

The goal of the potential accord is to make it easier for the US Food and Drug Administration to approve Swiss pharmaceuticals, Scott Miller said in an interview with the newspaper published Sunday.

The US imported $21 billion (€19.8 billion) worth of pharmaceutical products from Switzerland last year, according to data from the Geneva-based International Trade Center.

The development comes amid stalled trade talks between the US and Switzerland, which continue to disagree over market access for US agricultural products into the alpine nation.

“Switzerland has decided that they cannot give us access to the agriculture market, Miller said. “Until we get any further there we will talk about specific sectoral agreements.

US exports of agricultural products to Switzerland were $393 million in 2019, according to the US Trade Representative.

Switzerland is America’s 16th-largest goods-trading partner. Two-way goods and services trade between the US and Switzerland totaled $134 billion in 2019, according to the USTR. - Bloomberg

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