On 14 October 2020 the Federal Council adopted a specific strategy for the Middle East and North Africa region (MENA Strategy) for the 2021–2024 period. It identifies five thematic priorities: peace, security and human rights; migration and protection of people in need; sustainable development; economic affairs, finance, science; digitalisation and new technologies.
These priorities are weighted differently across the various regions and countries. Switzerland's three priority thematic areas for the Middle East region are armed and political conflicts, economic development and governance. Switzerland is also addressing the needs of young people by promoting the development of vocational training, thus facilitating access to the labour market.
Strategy MENA region
Switzerland's priorities in the occupied Palestinian territory
The MENA Strategy 2021-2024 identifies the following priorities for Switzerland in the occupied Palestinian territory:
Switzerland offers its good offices to facilitate Israeli-Palestinian and inter-Palestinian dialogue. It also aims to improve the rule of law, governance and respect for international humanitarian law through functioning Palestinian institutions.
Switzerland's position on the Middle East conflict
Switzerland supports the local authorities in providing essential services to people in need - for example acces to water in the Gaza Strip - and food and education to Palestinian refugees.
Switzerland strengthens the population’s resilience so as to reduce their dependency on humanitarian aid.
Employment and new technologies
Switzerland is seeking cooperation with the private sector to create prospects, jobs and income-generating opportunities for young people, particularly in the field of new technologies.
Swiss cooperation programme for the Near East 2021-2024