VPET fund

Under the Vocational and Professional Education and Training Act (VPETA), VPET funds are established by the professional organisations within a given economic branch. Contributions are received by branch members and allocated to promoting vocational and professional education and training. Each VPET fund is managed by the professional organisation established for the given branch (Art. 60, para. 1 VPETA).

Due to the binding nature of VPET funds, companies that do not contribute to the costs of vocational and professional education and training and apprenticeship training must contribute to this solidarity fund. Thus, companies that do not belong to a professional organisation may be compelled to pay adequate solidarity contributions. The Vocational and Professional Education and Training Act (VPETA, SR 412.10) describes the conditions that must be met in order for contributions to a VPET fund to be declared mandatory for all companies within the given economic branch. The Federal Council may implement the measure provided that at least 30% of the companies totalling at least 30% of the employees and learners of the branch already contribute to the fund. Depending on the range of occupations available in a company, contributions to several funds may be necessary (Art. 60, para. 3 and 4 VPETA).

There are also cross-cutting cantonal funds – particularly in the Italian and French-speaking regions of Switzerland – which are independent from the branches. Such funds are governed by cantonal law and contributions help to finance measures in favour of VET programmes for all occupations. When there is a cantonal fund, those professional organisations that are interested can agree with the canton in question on the payment of contributions or consequently adapt the list of services that they provide.

Companies that pay contributions to an association or a fund (e.g. cantonal fund or other fund) for vocational and professional education and training or that are able to prove that they provide adequate apprenticeship training or job-related continuing education and training (CET) may not be compelled to make other compulsory payments to a VPET fund (Art. 60, para. 6 VPETA).