We're always looking for ways to make better. Have an idea? See something that needs fixing? Let us know!


The Swiss Confederation was founded in 1291 as a defensive alliance among three cantons. In succeeding years, other localities joined the original three. The Swiss Confederation secured its independence from the Holy Roman Empire in 1499. A constitution of 1848, subsequently modified in 1874, replaced the confederation with a centralized federal government. Switzerland's sovereignty and neutrality have long been honored by the major European powers, and the country was not involved in either of the two world wars. The political and economic integration of Europe over the past half century, as well as Switzerland's role in many UN and international organizations, has strengthened Switzerland's ties with its neighbors. However, the country did not officially become a UN member until 2002. Switzerland remains active... See More



 Central Europe, east of France, north of Italy

Geographic Coordinates:

 47 00 N, 8 00 E


 Total: 41,277 sq km
Land: 39,997 sq km
Water: 1,280 sq km

Area - Comparative:

 Slightly less than twice the size of New Jersey

Land Boundaries:

 Total: 1,852 km
Border countries: Austria 164 km, France 573 km, Italy 740 km, Liechtenstein 41 km, Germany 334 km


 0 km (landlocked) (Rank: 240)

Maritime Claims:

 None (landlocked)


 Temperate, but varies with altitude; cold, cloudy, rainy/snowy winters; cool to warm, cloudy, humid summers with occasional showers


 Mostly mountains (Alps in south, Jura in northwest) with a central plateau of rolling hills, plains, and large lakes

Elevation Extremes:

 Lowest point: Lake Maggiore 195 m
Highest point: Dufourspitze 4,634 m

Natural Resources:

 Hydropower potential, timber, salt

Land Use:

 Arable land: 9.91%
Permanent crops: 0.58%
Other: 89.51% (2005)

Irrigated Land:

 250 sq km (2008)

Total Renewable Water Resources:

 53.3 cu km (2005)

Freshwater Withdrawal:

 Total: 2.52 cu km/yr (24%/74%/2%)
Per capita: 348 cu m/yr (2002)

Natural Hazards:

 Avalanches, landslides; flash floods

Environment - Current Issues:

 Air pollution from vehicle emissions and open-air burning; acid rain; water pollution from increased use of agricultural fertilizers; loss of biodiversity

Environment - International Agreements:

 Party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulfur 85, Air Pollution-Sulfur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Marine Dumping, Marine Life Conservation, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling

Signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea

Geography - Note:

 Landlocked; crossroads of northern and southern Europe; along with southeastern France, northern Italy, and southwestern Austria, has the highest elevations in the Alps

Back to the Top



 Noun: Swiss (singular and plural)
Adjective: Swiss

Ethnic Groups:

 German 65%, French 18%, Italian 10%, Romansch 1%, other 6%


 German (official) 63.7%, French (official) 20.4%, Italian (official) 6.5%, Serbo-Croatian 1.5%, Albanian 1.3%, Portuguese 1.2%, Spanish 1.1%, English 1%, Romansch (official) 0.5%, other 2.8% (2000 census)

Note: German, French, Italian, and Romansch are all national and official languages


 Roman Catholic 41.8%, Protestant 35.3%, Muslim 4.3%, Orthodox 1.8%, other Christian 0.4%, other 1%, unspecified 4.3%, none 11.1% (2000 census)


 7,639,961 (July 2011 est.)

Age Structure:

 0-14 years: 15.2% (male 602,894/female 560,175)
15-64 years: 67.8% (male 2,612,557/female 2,569,318)
65 years and over: 17% (male 543,074/female 751,943) (2011 est.)

Median Age:

 Total: 41.7 years
Male: 40.6 years
Female: 42.8 years (2011 est.)

Population Growth Rate:

 0.21% (2011 est.)

Birth Rate:

 9.53 births/1,000 population (2011 est.)

Death Rate:

 8.72 deaths/1,000 population (July 2011 est.)

Net Migration Rate:

 1.29 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2011 est.)


 Urban population: 74% of total population (2010)
Rate of urbanization: 0.5% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)

Major Cities - Population:

 Zurich 1.143 million; BERN (capital) 346,000 (2009)

Sex Ratio:

 At birth: 1.054 male(s)/female
Under 15 years: 1.08 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.72 male(s)/female
Total population: 0.97 male(s)/female (2011 est.)

Maternal Mortality Rate:

 10 deaths/100,000 live births (2008)

Infant Mortality Rate:

 Total: 4.08 deaths/1,000 live births
Male: 4.53 deaths/1,000 live births
Female: 3.6 deaths/1,000 live births (2011 est.)

Life Expectancy At Birth:

 Total population: 81.07 years
Male: 78.24 years
Female: 84.05 years (2011 est.)

Total Fertility Rate:

 1.46 children born/woman (2011 est.)

Health Expenditures:

 11.3% of GDP (2009)

Physicians Density:

 4.07 physicians/1,000 population (2009)

Hospital Bed Density:

 5.31 beds/1,000 population (2008)

Drinking Water Source:

 Urban: 100% of population
Rural: 100% of population
Total: 100% of population (2008)

Sanitation Facility Access:

 Urban: 100% of population
Rural: 100% of population
Total: 100% of population (2008)

HIV/AIDS - Adult Prevalence Rate:

 0.4% (2009 est.)

HIV/AIDS - People Living With HIV/AIDS:

 18,000 (2009 est.)

HIV/AIDS - Deaths:

 Fewer than 100 (2009 est.)

Obesity - Adult Prevalence Rate:

 8.2% (2007)

Education Expenditures:

 5.2% of GDP (2007)


 Definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Total population: 99%
Male: 99%
Female: 99% (2003 est.)

Average Years of Schooling:

 Total: 16 years
Male: 16 years
Female: 15 years (2008)

Unemployment, Youth Ages 15-24:

 Total: 8.2%
Male: 7.7%
Female: 8.7% (2009)

Back to the Top


Country Name:

 Conventional long form: Swiss Confederation
Conventional short form: Switzerland
Local long form: Schweizerische Eidgenossenschaft (German); Confederation Suisse (French); Confederazione Svizzera (Italian); Confederaziun Svizra (Romansh)
Local short form: Schweiz (German); Suisse (French); Svizzera (Italian); Svizra (Romansh)

Government Type:

 Formally a confederation but similar in structure to a federal republic


 Name: Bern
Geographic coordinates: 46 57 N, 7 26 E
Time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October

Administrative Divisions:

 26 cantons (cantons, singular - canton in French; cantoni, singular - cantone in Italian; Kantone, singular - Kanton in German); Aargau, Appenzell Ausser-Rhoden, Appenzell Inner-Rhoden, Basel-Landschaft, Basel-Stadt, Bern, Fribourg, Geneve, Glarus, Graubunden, Jura, Luzern, Neuchatel, Nidwalden, Obwalden, Sankt Gallen, Schaffhausen, Schwyz, Solothurn, Thurgau, Ticino, Uri, Valais, Vaud, Zug, Zurich

Note: 6 of the cantons - Appenzell Ausser-Rhoden, Appenzell-Inner-Rhoden, Basel-Landschaft, Basel-Stadt, Nidwalden, Obwalden - are refered to as half cantons because they elect only one member to the Council of States and, in popular referendums where a majority of popular votes and a majority of cantonal votes are required, these six cantons only have a half vote


 1 August 1291 (founding of the Swiss Confederation)

National Holiday:

 Founding of the Swiss Confederation, 1 August (1291)


 Revision of Constitution of 1874 approved by the Federal Parliament 18 December 1998, adopted by referendum 18 April 1999, officially entered into force 1 January 2000

Legal System:

 Civil law system; judicial review of legislative acts, except for federal decrees of a general obligatory character

International Law Organization Participation:

 Accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; accepts ICCt jurisdiction


 18 years of age; universal

Executive Branch:

 Chief of state: President of the Swiss Confederation Eveline WIDMER-SCHLUMPF(since 14 December 2011); Vice President Ueli MAURER (since 14 December 2011); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government representing the Federal Council; the Federal Council is the formal chief of state and head of government whose council members, rotating in one-year terms as federal president, represent the Council

Head of government: President of the Swiss Confederation Micheline CALMY-REY (since 1 January 2011); Vice President Eveline WIDMER-SCHLUMPF (since 1 January 2011)

Cabinet: Federal Council or Bundesrat (in German), Conseil Federal (in French), Consiglio Federale (in Italian) is elected by the Federal Assembly usually from among its members for a four-year term

Elections: president and vice president elected by the Federal Assembly from among the members of the Federal Council for a one-year term (they may not serve consecutive terms); election last held on 14 December 2011 (next to be held in early December 2012)

Election results: Eveline WIDMER-SCHLUMPF elected president; number of Federal Assembly votes - 174 of 239; Ueli MAURER elected vice president;

Legislative Branch:

 Bicameral Federal Assembly or Bundesversammlung (in German), Assemblee Federale (in French), Assemblea Federale (in Italian) consists of the Council of States or Staenderat (in German), Conseil des Etats (in French), Consiglio degli Stati (in Italian) (46 seats; membership consists of 2 representatives from each canton and 1 from each half canton; members serve four-year terms) and the National Council or Nationalrat (in German), Conseil National (in French), Consiglio Nazionale (in Italian) (200 seats; members elected by popular vote on the basis of proportional representation serve four-year terms)

Elections: Council of States - last held in most cantons in October 2007 (each canton determines when the next election will be held); National Council - last held on 23 October 2011 (next to be held in October 2015)

Election results: Council of States - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - CVP 15, FDP 12, SVP 7, SPS 9, other 3; National Council - percent of vote by party - SVP 26.6%, SPS 18.7%, FDP 15.1%, CVP 12.3%, Greens 8.4%, GLP 5.4%, BDP 5.4%, other 8.1%; seats by party - SVP 54, SPS 46, FDP 30, CVP 28, Green Party 15, GLP 12, BDP 9, other small parties 6

Judicial Branch:

 Federal Supreme Court (judges elected for six-year terms by the Federal Assembly)

Political Parties and Leaders:

 Christian Democratic People's Party (Christlichdemokratische Volkspartei der Schweiz or CVP, Parti Democrate-Chretien Suisse or PDC, Partito Popolare Democratico Svizzero or PPD, Partida Cristiandemocratica dalla Svizra or PCD) [Christophe DARBELLAY]; Conservative Democratic Party (Buergerlich-Demokratische Partei Schweiz or BDP, Parti Bourgeois Democratique Suisse or PBD, Partito Borghese Democratico Svizzero or PBD, Partido burgais democratica Svizera or (PBD)) [Hans GRUNDER]; Free Democratic Party or FDP.The Liberals (FDP.Die Liberalen, PLR.Les Liberaux-Radicaux, PLR.I Liberali, Ils Liberals) [Fulvio PELLI]; Green Liberal Party (Grunliberale or GLP, Parti vert liberale or PVL, Partito Verde-Liberale or PVL, Partida Verde Liberale or PVL) [Martin BAUMLE]; Green Party (Gruene Partei der Schweiz or Gruene, Parti Ecologiste Suisse or Les Verts, Partito Ecologista Svizzero or I Verdi, Partida Ecologica Svizra or La Verda) [Ueli LEUENBERGER]; Social Democratic Party (Sozialdemokratische Partei der Schweiz or SPS, Parti Socialiste Suisse or PSS, Partito Socialista Svizzero or PSS, Partida Socialdemocratica de la Svizra or PSS) [Christian LEVRAT]; Swiss People's Party (Schweizerische Volkspartei or SVP, Union Democratique du Centre or UDC, Unione Democratica di Centro or UDC, Uniun Democratica dal Center or UDC) [Toni BRUNNER]; and other minor parties

International Organization Participation:

 ADB (nonregional member), AfDB (nonregional member), Australia Group, BIS, CE, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, EFTA, ESA, FAO, FATF, G-10, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IGAD (partners), ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC, LAIA (observer), MIGA, MONUSCO, NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OIF, OPCW, OSCE, Paris Club, PCA, PFP, Schengen Convention, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNITAR, UNRWA, UNTSO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC

Diplomatic Representation in the US:

 Chief of mission: Ambassador Manuel SAGER
Chancery: 2900 Cathedral Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008
Telephone: [1] (202) 745-7900
FAX: [1] (202) 387-2564
Consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco
Consulate(s): Boston

Diplomatic Representation From the US:

 Chief of mission: Ambassador Donald S. BEYER, Jr.
Embassy: Sulgeneckstrasse 19, CH-3007 Bern
Mailing address: use embassy street address
Telephone: [41] (031) 357 70 11
FAX: [41] (031) 357 73 44

Flag Description:

 Red square with a bold, equilateral white cross in the center that does not extend to the edges of the flag; various medieval legends purport to describe the origin of the flag; a white cross used as identification for troops of the Swiss Confederation is first attested at the Battle of Laupen (1339)

National Symbols:

 Swiss cross (white cross on red field; arms equal length)

National Anthem:

 Name: "Schweizerpsalm" [German] "Cantique Suisse" [French] "Salmo svizzero," [Italian] "Psalm svizzer" [Romansch] (Swiss Psalm)
Lyrics/music: Leonhard WIDMER [German], Charles CHATELANAT [French], Camillo VALSANGIACOMO [Italian], and Flurin CAMATHIAS [Romansch]/Alberik ZWYSSIG

Note: unofficially adopted 1961, official adoption 1981; the anthem has been popular in a number of Swiss cantons since its composition (in German) in 1841; translated into the other three official languages of the country (French, Italian, and Romansch), it is official in each of those languages

Back to the Top


Economy - Overview:

 Switzerland is a peaceful, prosperous, and modern market economy with low unemployment, a highly skilled labor force, and a per capita GDP among the highest in the world. Switzerland's economy benefits from a highly developed service sector, led by financial services, and a manufacturing industry that specializes in high-technology, knowledge-based production. The Swiss have brought their economic practices largely into conformity with the EU's, in order to enhance their international competitiveness, but some trade protectionism remains, particularly for its small agricultural sector. The global financial crisis and resulting economic downturn put Switzerland in a recession in 2009 as global export demand stalled. The Swiss National Bank during this period effectively implemented a zero-interest rate policy in a bid to boost the economy and prevent appreciation of the franc. Switzerland's economy grew by 2.7% in 2010, when Bern implemented a third fiscal stimulus program, but its prized banking sector has recently faced significant challenges. The country's largest banks suffered sizable losses in 2008-09, leading its largest bank to accept a government rescue deal in late 2008. Switzerland has also come under increasing pressure from individual neighboring countries, the EU, the US, and international institutions to reform its banking secrecy laws. Consequently, the government agreed to conform to OECD regulations on administrative assistance in tax matters, including tax evasion. The government has renegotiated its double taxation agreements with numerous countries, including the US, to incorporate the OECD standard, and it is working with Germany and the UK to resolve outstanding issues, particularly the possibility of imposing taxes on bank deposits held by foreigners. Parliament passed the first five double-taxation agreements, including that with the US, in March 2010. The agreement with the US awaits US Senate approval. In 2009, Swiss financial regulators ordered the country's largest bank to reveal at Washington's behest the names of US account-holders suspected of using the bank to commit tax fraud. These steps will have a lasting impact on Switzerland's long history of bank secrecy.

GDP (Purchasing Power Parity):

 $324.5 billion (2010 est.)
$316.4 billion (2009 est.)
$322.6 billion (2008 est.)

Note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP (Official Exchange Rate):

 $523.8 billion (2010 est.)

GDP - Real Growth Rate:

 2.6% (2010 est.)
-1.9% (2009 est.)
1.9% (2008 est.)

GDP - Per Capita (PPP):

 $42,600 (2010 est.)
$41,600 (2009 est.)
$42,600 (2008 est.)

Note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP - Composition By Sector:

 Agriculture: 1.3%
Industry: 27.2%
Services: 71.5% (2010 est.)

Labor Force:

 4.218 million (2010 est.)

Labor Force - By Occupation:

 Agriculture: 3.4%
Industry: 23.4%
Services: 73.2% (2010)

Unemployment Rate:

 3.9% (2010 est.)
3.7% (2009 est.)

Population Below Poverty Line:

 6.9% (2010)

Household Income / Consumption By Share:

 Lowest 10%: 7.5%
Highest 10%: 19% (2007)

Distribution of Family Income - Gini Index:

 33.7 (2008)
33.1 (1992)

Investment (Gross Fixed):

 20.9% of GDP (2010 est.)


 Revenues: $185.7 billion
Expenditures: $182.3 billion

Note: includes federal, cantonal, and municipal accounts (2010 est.)

Taxes and Other Revenues:

 35.5% of GDP (2010 est.)

Budget Surplus / Deficit:

 0.7% of GDP (2010 est.)

Public Debt:

 38.4% of GDP (2010 est.)
39% of GDP (2009 est.)

Inflation Rate (Consumer Prices):

 0.7% (2010 est.)
-0.5% (2009 est.)

Central Bank Discount Rate:

 0.5% (31 December 2010 est.)
0.75% (31 December 2009 est.)

Commercial Bank Prime Lending Rate:

 2.733% (31 December 2010 est.)
2.751% (31 December 2009 est.)

Stock of Money:

 $275.5 billion (31 December 2008 est.)
$213.9 billion (31 December 2007 est.)

Stock of Quasi Money:

 $454.2 billion (31 December 2008 est.)
$450.7 billion (31 December 2007)

Stock of Narrow Money:

 $452.6 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$394.7 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Stock of Broad Money:

 $982.6 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$857.9 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Stock of Domestic Credit:

 $1.119 trillion (31 December 2010 est.)
$1.003 trillion (31 December 2009 est.)

Market Value of Publicly Traded Shares:

 $1.229 trillion (31 December 2010)
$1.071 trillion (31 December 2009)
$862.7 billion (31 December 2008)

Agriculture - Products:

 Grains, fruits, vegetables; meat, eggs


 Machinery, chemicals, watches, textiles, precision instruments, tourism, banking, and insurance

Industrial Production Growth Rate:

 6.3% (2010 est.)

Electricity - Production:

 64.08 billion kWh (2009 est.)

Electricity - Production By Source:

 Fossil fuel: 1.3%
Hydro: 59.5%
Nuclear: 37.1%
Other: 2% (2001)

Electricity - Consumption:

 57.5 billion kWh (2009)

Electricity - Exports:

 33.53 billion kWh (2009 est.)

Electricity - Imports:

 2.157 billion kWh (2009 est.)

Oil - Production:

 3,488 bbl/day (2010 est.)

Oil - Consumption:

 242,700 bbl/day (2010 est.)

Oil - Exports:

 9,851 bbl/day (2009 est.)

Oil - Imports:

 272,700 bbl/day (2009 est.)

Oil - Proven Reserves:

 0 bbl (1 January 2011 est.)

Natural Gas - Production:

 0 cu m (2010 est.)

Natural Gas - Consumption:

 3.625 billion cu m (2010 est.)

Natural Gas - Exports:

 0 cu m (2010 est.)

Natural Gas - Imports:

 3.625 billion cu m (2010 est.)

Natural Gas - Proven Reserves:

 0 cu m (1 January 2009 est.)

Current Account Balance:

 $70.36 billion (2010 est.)
$38.7 billion (2009 est.)


 $258.5 billion (2010 est.)
$206.1 billion (2009 est.)

Exports - Commodities:

 Machinery, chemicals, metals, watches, agricultural products

Exports - Partners:

 Germany 19.2%, US 10.2%, Italy 7.9%, France 7.7%, UK 5.9% (2010)


 $246.2 billion (2010 est.)
$204.7 billion (2009 est.)

Imports - Commodities:

 Machinery, chemicals, vehicles, metals; agricultural products, textiles

Imports - Partners:

 Germany 32%, Italy 10.2%, France 8.5%, US 5.3%, Netherlands 4.5%, Austria 4.3% (2010)

Reserves of Foreign Exchange and Gold:

 $270.3 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$135.3 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Debt - External:

 $1.346 trillion (30 June 2011)
$1.2 trillion (30 September 2010)

Stock of Direct Foreign Investment - Abroad:

 $911.5 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$841.7 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Stock of Direct Foreign Investment - At Home:

 $576.2 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$530.6 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Exchange Rates:

 Convert Swiss Franc to Any Currency

Swiss francs (CHF) per US dollar -
1.0429 (2010)
1.0881 (2009)
1.0774 (2008)
1.1973 (2007)
1.2539 (2006)

Back to the Top


Telephones - Main Lines In Use:

 4.488 million (2010)

Telephones - Cellular:

 9.475 million (2010)

Telephone System:

 General assessment: highly developed telecommunications infrastructure with excellent domestic and international services

Domestic: ranked among leading countries for fixed-line teledensity and infrastructure; mobile-cellular subscribership roughly 120 per 100 persons; extensive cable and microwave radio relay networks

International: country code - 41; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean and Indian Ocean)

Broadcast Media:

 The publicly-owned radio and television broadcaster, Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SRG/SSR), operates 7 national television networks, 3 broadcasting in German, 2 in Italian, and 2 in French; private commercial television stations broadcast regionally and locally; television broadcasts from stations in Germany, Italy, and France are widely accessed using multi-channel cable and satellite TV services; SRG/SSR operates 18 radio stations that, along with private broadcasters, provide national to local coverage (2009)

Radio Broadcast Stations:

 AM 3, FM 106 (plus many low-power stations), shortwave 3 (2008)

Television Broadcast Stations:

 106 (2007)

Internet Country Code:


Internet Hosts:

 4.816 million (2010)

Internet Users:

 6.152 million (2009)

Back to the Top



 65 (2010)

Airports - With Paved Runways:

 Total: 42
Over 3,047 m: 3
2,438 to 3,047 m: 3
1,524 to 2,437 m: 14
914 to 1,523 m: 5
Under 914 m: 17 (2010)

Airports - With Unpaved Runways:

 Total: 23
Under 914 m: 23 (2010)


 1 (2010)


 Gas 1,681 km; oil 94 km; refined products 7 km (2010)


 Total: 4,876 km
Standard gauge: 3,846 km 1.435-m gauge (3,591 km electrified)
Narrow gauge: 1,081 km 1.000-m gauge (1,013 km electrified); 10 km 0.800-m gauge (10 km electrified) (2010)


 Total: 71,454 km
Paved: 71,454 km (includes 1,790 of expressways) (2010)


 1,299 km (there are 1,227 km of waterways on lakes and rivers for public transport and another 65 km on the Rhine River between Basel-Rheinfelden and Schaffhausen-Bodensee used for the transport of commercial goods) (2010)

Merchant Marine:

 Total: 35
By type: bulk carrier 15, cargo 9, chemical tanker 6, container 4, petroleum tanker 1
Registered in other countries: 109 (Antigua and Barbuda 7, Bahamas 2, Cayman Islands 1, France 5, Germany 1, Italy 6, Liberia 17, Luxembourg 1, Malta 14, Marshall Islands 12, NZ 2, Panama 22, Portugal 3, Russia 4, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 5, Singapore 4, Spain 1, Tonga 1, Tuvalu 1) (2010)

Ports and Terminals:


Back to the Top


Military Branches:

 Swiss Armed Forces: Land Forces, Swiss Air Force (Schweizer Luftwaffe) (2010)

Military Service Age and Obligation:

 19-26 years of age for male compulsory military service; 18 years of age for voluntary male and female military service; every Swiss male has to serve at least 260 days in the armed forces; conscripts receive 18 weeks of mandatory training, followed by seven 3-week intermittent recalls for training during the next 10 years (2010)

Manpower Available For Military Service:

 Males age 16-49: 1,828,043
Females age 16-49: 1,786,552 (2010 est.)

Manpower Fit For Military Service:

 Males age 16-49: 1,493,509
Females age 16-49: 1,459,450 (2010 est.)

Manpower Reaching Militarily Significant Age Annually:

 Male: 46,562
Female: 42,585 (2010 est.)

Military Expenditures:

 1% of GDP (2005 est.)

Back to the Top


Illicit Drugs:

 A major international financial center vulnerable to the layering and integration stages of money laundering; despite significant legislation and reporting requirements, secrecy rules persist and nonresidents are permitted to conduct business through offshore entities and various intermediaries; transit country for and consumer of South American cocaine, Southwest Asian heroin, and Western European synthetics; domestic cannabis cultivation and limited ecstasy production

Back to the Top

Last Updated: December 2011

Switzerland Main Page World Factbook Main Page


Click any image to enlarge.

National Flag

(CHF) Swiss Franc (CHF)
Convert to Any Currency


Locator Map