Designated new PM for Italy gives some hope for stalemate end


GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Enrico Letta has one of the world’s most unenviable tasks, getting Italian politicians to work together, and a hopeful sign he might manage it is that criticism of his selection is more muted than is often the case. Italy has been without a government since February parliamentary elections that were inconclusive, with […]

Ticino worried by boom in cross-border apprentices

A growing number of Swiss towns and cities have 20kph zones where pedestrians and cars mingle, but the pedestrian has the right-of-way

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – The number of young Italians who live in Italy but cross the border daily to train as apprentices under canton Ticino’s apprenticeship programme has increased by 40 percent in “the past few years”, according to RTS public broadcasting, and authorities in the canton are becoming concerned. Some 700 apprentices, 10 percent of […]

Sports, football: special shuttles for big Brazil-Italy match Thursday

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Geneva is host Thursday night to a friendly match between Brazil and Italy, and special shuttle buses will be running to get fans to and from the stadium. The match starts at 20:30. Shuttle buses will operate from Gare Cornavin main train station starting at 18:01, says the CFF rail company, and […]

Cross-border workers, numbers continue to rise

TAB Basel cross border workers 081112

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Cross-border commuters increased by 4.8 percent in 2012, figures released by the Swiss Federal Statistical Office Monday 4 March show. About one in 10 workers in the Lake Geneva region and around Basel in northwestern Switzerland is a cross-border worker. The figure for Ticino is one in four. Eighty percent of them […]

Swiss war materials exports down 20 percent in 2012

BERN, SWITZERLAND – Swiss exports rose by 1.7 percent in 2012, but one area that was down was war materials, which fell by 20 percent, from CHF874 million to CHF700m. Germany was the main customer, followed by Saudi Arabia, Italy, the US and India. One large sale of unarmed fighter planes for training, delivered to […]

Italy faces a large question mark over who will be in charge

Protest votes could skewer results GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Voting has just ended at 15:00 in Italy’s second day of a general election, and uncertainty about the outcome remains strong. The front runner continues to be the country’s former minister for industry, Pier Luigi Bersani, but his lead is small. Reuters reports that a growing number […]

Animal protests: deaths of seals and Swiss brown bear

PETA protests Canada, Norway appeal to allow more seal hunting

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Protesters took to the streets of Geneva this week, in front of the World Trade Organization, to protest efforts by Canada and Norway to allow more open  hunting of seals. A partial ban allows only a limited number of seals to be culled annually; Peta, an activist group, says that the allowed […]

Nestlé recalls products with horsemeat

GENEVA / VEVEY, SWITZERLAND – Nestlé and Lidl, two of the giants in the food industry, said Monday they are recalling products marked with beef in which traces of horsemeat have been found. The Swiss company is recalling pasta with meat products from Italy and Spain, while Lidl’s recall covers Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Belgium. […]

The skiing buzz: avalanche videos that make your heart catch (update)

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Viral videos this week include two ski clips that show avalanches, one the extraordinary feat of Swatch World Cup Big Mountain competition skier Sverre Lilliequist, who led the European team in Zermatt (competition 10-15 February), where he arrives safely at the finish line. The second was posted in January, in Italy, an […]

First in a series of three: regional travel & wine

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – I’ve just posted the first of three articles about travel and wine touring in the region as a GenevaLunch feature article; the other two will appear Friday 6 February and Monday February: Swiss wines, followed by the Friendship Triangle on the area where France, Switzerland and Italy come together. The three have […]