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As head of the Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research (EAER), Federal Councillor Johann N. Schneider-Ammann is one of the seven members of the Federal Council, Switzerland's cabinet.
The EAER consists of two State Secretariats, three Federal Offices and other administrative units. The State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) is the federal government's centre of expertise for all core issues relating to economic and trade policy. Its aim is to ensure sustainable economic growth by putting in place the necessary regulatory and economic conditions. As head of the EAER, Federal Councillor Johann N. Schneider-Ammann is responsible for the country's optimal foreign economic policy positioning. At the multilateral level, the focus is on Switzerland's commitments within the World Trade Organisation (WTO). At the same time, Switzerland also seeks to safeguard its interests on the basis of bilateral free trade agreements. At the national level, the EAER establishes the regulatory framework and economic conditions which provide Swiss businesses and foreign companies located in Switzerland with sound prospects for the future. In addition, one of the main aims is to create a favourable environment for the creation of new jobs through flexible labour market conditions. This includes easier access to the labour market for young people and women as well as older workers.
The State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation (SERI) also falls under Johann N. Schneider-Ammann's area of responsibility. The three fields of research, education and innovation are extremely important for our society and for Switzerland's economic performance. In close cooperation with the cantons, as well as the private sector, education at all levels is structured in such a way that all qualifications lead to viable jobs, and that the diverse needs of vocational and professional education and training, universities of applied sciences, universities and the ETH domain are covered. Two further key areas are international cooperation within research programmes and the Space Affairs Division, which is an important partner for industry.
The Federal Office for Agriculture is also part of the EAER. Johann N. Schneider-Ammann will be implementing four key priorities through the ‘Agriculture Policy 2014-2017' plan: safe food production, efficient use of resources, safeguarding vital rural space and further encouraging business-mindedness in the agricultural and food sectors.
Before taking up his position as head of the EAER on 1 November 2010, Johann N. Schneider-Ammann was a member of the National Council for eleven years for the FDP.The Liberals. During this time he was a member of the Committee for Economic Affairs and Taxation.
Federal Councillor Schneider-Ammann was born in 1952 and is an electrical engineer by profession (Dipl. El. Ing. ETH). Before his election to the Federal Council he was president and delegate of the Ammann Group. Johann N. Schneider-Ammann is married and the father of two grown children.
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