Exciting News from Switzerland: An Initiative for a referendum on monetary reform is starting!
In Switzerland anyone can bring about a national referendum on changes to the Constitution by collecting 100,000 signatures within an 18 month period. It’s called a “people’s initiative”. Our sister organisation in Switzerland (MoMo) is launching “Vollgeld Initiative” on 7th June!
‘Vollgeld’ literally means “full money” in English, and it has the same meaning as “Sovereign Money” as used by Positive Money. The ‘Vollgeld’ reform is a change in the constitution to establish the Swiss National Bank as the sole institution allowed to create money in the form of coins, bank notes and also bank deposits. Commercial banks will no longer be able to create money by granting loans, as they do now. The Swiss National Bank will have the task of creating the right amount of money (debt-free) that the Swiss economy needs, in the best interest of its citizens (how this is distributed in the economy will be decided by the government).
When is it starting?
After translating everything into German, French and Italian, MoMo will be able to start collecting signatures from 3rd June. The launch party “Vollstart” is being held on Saturday 7th June.
What will be the consequence in Switzerland?
If MoMo can collect the signatures in time there will be a referendum in Switzerland. That will mean all serious Swiss media will debate the issue extensively and politicians will also be expected to have an opinion on the debate. That will mean all serious Swiss newspapers and news programs will debate the issue extensively. Political parties and politicians will also be expected to have a view. The Swiss Initiative system also allows for the State to put forward a counter proposal at the same time – this is also likely to be discussed. After this referendum, regardless of result, all adults in Switzerland will have come across the arguments for and against money reform. If the referendum is successful, then Switzerland will implement money reform!
What will be the consequence internationally?
Swiss referenda are usually reported in all of the more serious newspapers across Europe. It is likely that outside of Switzerland as well as inside, economists, politicians, central bankers and the general public will widely discuss the issues. We’re hoping it might just be the catalyst for change in other countries!
Where can I get more information?
See the website vollgeld-initiative.ch, where you can find information in German, French and Italian (and a brief explanation in English). The main principles are the same as those on the Positive Money website.
You can help too even if you are not Swiss citizen
One way to help would be to donate money to the organisation bringing the Initiative: MoMo (Monetäre Modernisierung). They need many people on the streets explaining to what it’s all about and collecting signatures, and at the moment all of them are volunteers. They would like to pay for two people to work full-time in the back office organising things, managing the website etc. There are costs to get the signatures validated, and for campaign materials (flyers etc.), distribution etc. This will cost about 500,000 Swiss Francs (£330,000) in total. (Aside: Hardly any Swiss initiatives have been successful with less than around 500,000 Swiss francs). To date they have about 200,000 Francs donated or promised.
If you were able to support this initiative, it could just make all the difference to bringing this important referendum to Switzerland, and perhaps even become the catalyst for monetary reform in other countries.
To contribute to the Vollgeld campaign using PayPal, please follow this link:
Or, to use online banking, the details are:
IBAN: CH61 0900 0000 6035 4546 4,
SWIFTBIC or BIC: POFICHBEXXX
(For anyone needing help making larger donations, please ring Emma on her English number: 07958458386 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org)