Factsheet on Switzerland
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General

Official Name

Swiss Confederation (Confederation Suisse (French))

Capital

Berne

Area

41,285 Sq. Kms.

Currency

Swiss Francs (CHF) – Freely convertible.

GDP

CHF 645.6 billion (2016)

GDP Growth Rate

1.3% (2016)

Unemployment

3.3% (2016)

GDP Per Capita

CHF 80,315 (provisional 2014)

Forest Cover

31.0% 

CO2 emissions

42.97 million mt. (2012 est)

Tourist Arrivals

15 million yearly

Population (thousands)

8327.1 (2016): 25% foreigners

Age Profile

0-19 years: 20.1%

20-39 years: 26.7%

40-64 years: 35.2%

65-79 years: 12.9%

80years and over: 5.0 % (2016)


Life expectancy

Male: 81.1 years

Female: 85.4 years (2016)

Languages

Multi-cultural: 4 national languages-German 63.3%, French 22.7%, Italian 8.1%, Romansch 0.5% and others 5.4%. English is generally understood in most of the big cities, hotels, banks, etc.

Ethnic groups

Mixed European--German 65%, French 18%, Italian 10%, Romansch 1%, 6% others.

Religion

Roman Catholics (37.9%), Protestants (25.5%), Muslims (5.1%), Other Christian denominations (5.7%), Jewish (0.2%), no religious conviction (23%) and others (2.6%)

Internet Penetration

88% (2015 est.)

Mobile phones

11.7 million (2015 est.)

Urbanisation

73.9% (2015)

Exports

213762 USD million (2016) without bullion

Imports

176265 USD million (2016) without bullion

Main Trade Partners

Germany, USA, Italy, France, UK, China, Austria, EU.

Political

Political Structure

Federal Republic composed of 26 cantons. One year rotational presidency from among the 7 member Federal Council (Executive Body) which is elected by the joint session of the bicameral parliament for a 4 year term.

200-member National Council directly elected canton-wise through proportional representation.

The 46 member Council of States represents the cantons (20 cantons + 6 half cantons) and is directly elected according to first past the post system.


2015 Parliamentary Election:

The Swiss People’s Party made large gains in the Swiss Parliamentary Elections held on 18 Oct. 2015. It received 29.4% of the valid votes, an increase of 2.8% over its 2011 figures and getting 65 seats in the lower house. The vote share of other major parties are Social Democrats (SP) 18.8%; Free Radicals (FDP) 16.4%; Christian Democrats (CVP) 11.6%; Green Party (Grune) 7.1%; Liberal Green Party (GLP) 4.6%; and Conservative Democratic Party (BDP) 4.1%.

2015 Federal Council Elections:

In the Federal Council elections in December, 2015, the Council’s composition was restored to the earlier consensus formula of 2 Federal Councillor for each of the 3 bigger parties and one from the 4th biggest party.


Major Political Parties & representation in Federal Council

Social Democratic Party (SP-2), Radical Democratic Party (FDP-2), Swiss People’s Party (SVP-2), Christian Democratic Party (CVP-1), Conservative Democratic Party (BDP),


Head of State (President)

Ms. Doris Leuthard, CVP

(Also Minister for Environment, Transport, Energy and Communications)

Head of Government

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Political Issues

Immigration, radicalisation, relations with the EU, crime and foreigners, Free Trade and protectionism, etc.


India’s Exports

CHF 1302 mn. (2016), 363 mn. (Jan-March, 17) without bullion

India’s Imports

CHF 1643 mn. (2016), 444 mn. (Jan-March, 17) without bullion

Indian Exports

Textiles and garments, organic chemicals, precious stones and jewellery, dyestuffs, machinery and parts, leather products, shoes and shoe uppers, cotton, plastics, coffee, tea and hand-knotted carpets.

Indian Imports

Besides bullion, Swiss exports to India consist of machinery and equipment (electrical and mechanical).

Indian Investments in Switzerland

Indian Investments in Switzerland were 725 million USD (329 .49 Equity +395.96 Loan) as of 2015-16, the same were 353 million USD (131.48 Equity +221.82 Loan) as of 2015.

Indian companies invested USD 1.2 billion between 2012 and 2014 in Switzerland, placing it among the top five European investment destinations and top-ten places globally for Indian investors. Major Indian IT companies including TCS, Infosys, Tech Mahindra, etc. provide services to major pharma companies, banks and insurance firms. Recently, Swiss luxury goods firm Lux was taken over by Eureka Forbes and earlier in 2010 M/s. Steiner, a construction company was taken over by HCC Ltd. Indian companies in pharma and life science sector are also present. There have also been acquisition in gold refinery, pharma, paper, etc. by Indian companies.

Swiss Investments in India

Swiss Investments in India were reported to be around USD 4 billion as of 2015, with 65% concentrated in the high-tech and engineering sectors, the rest being in pharma, services and processed food. From April 2000 to Sept. 2015, Switzerland invested USD 3.18 billion in India, thus becoming the 11th largest investor and accounting for about 1.2% of total FDI in India during this period. As a large part of FDI is routed through other countries, actual Swiss FDI in India is much higher, with overall Swiss investment inflows into India pegged at above USD 6.8 billion to 2013. More than 220 Swiss companies have a presence in India through their own subsidiaries and joint ventures. Most of the Swiss multinational companies like Nestle, ABB, Novartis, Roche UBS and Credit Suisse etc. have their operations in India. As per Swiss government data, Swiss enterprises have created over one lakh jobs in India and launched many vocational education programs in India. Several Swiss entities opened vocational training centres in India.

Indian Community

The Indian community in Switzerland numbers approximately 18,000 including over 6700 Persons of Indian Origin, most of whom are professionals. It is concentrated in Zurich, Geneva, Basel, Baden, Bern and Lausanne in that order. Indian associations are active in organizing cultural activities, festivals and national days. There are about 445 Indian students studying in Switzerland.



18 July 2017