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Switzerland (2004)

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Switzerland 2004 year

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
Age structure 0-14 years: 16.8% (male 647,362; female 602,333)

15-64 years: 67.9% (male 2,555,089; female 2,503,331)

65 years and over: 15.3% (male 466,615; female 676,137) (2004 est.)
Agriculture - products grains, fruits, vegetables; meat, eggs
Airports 65 (2003 est.)
Airports - with paved runways total: 42

over 3,047 m: 3

2,438 to 3,047 m: 5

1,524 to 2,437 m: 10

914 to 1,523 m: 8

under 914 m: 16 (2004 est.)
Airports - with unpaved runways total: 23

under 914 m: 23 (2004 est.)
Area total: 41,290 sq km

land: 39,770 sq km

water: 1,520 sq km
Area - comparative slightly less than twice the size of New Jersey
Background Switzerland's independence and neutrality have long been honored by the major European powers, and Switzerland 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 in many UN and international organizations, but retains a strong commitment to neutrality.
Birth rate 9.83 births/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Budget revenues: $123.2 billion

expenditures: $128 billion, including capital expenditures of NA (2003 est.)
Capital Bern
Climate temperate, but varies with altitude; cold, cloudy, rainy/snowy winters; cool to warm, cloudy, humid summers with occasional showers
Coastline 0 km (landlocked)
Constitution 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
Country name conventional long form: Swiss Confederation

conventional short form: Switzerland

local long form: Schweizerische Eidgenossenschaft (German), Confederation Suisse (French), Confederazione Svizzera (Italian)

local short form: Schweiz (German), Suisse (French), Svizzera (Italian)
Currency Swiss franc (CHF)
Death rate 8.44 deaths/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Debt - external NA (2000)
Diplomatic representation from the US chief of mission: Ambassador Pamela P. WILLEFORD

embassy: Jubilaumsstrasse 93, CH-3005 Bern

mailing address: use embassy street address

telephone: [41] (031) 357 70 11

FAX: [41] (031) 357 73 44
Diplomatic representation in the US chief of mission: Ambassador Christian BLICKENSTORFER

chancery: 2900 Cathedral Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008

telephone: [1] (202) 745-7900

FAX: [1] (202) 387-2564

consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, and San Francisco

consulate(s): Boston
Disputes - international none
Economic aid - donor ODA, $1.1 billion (1995)
Economy - overview Switzerland is a prosperous and stable modern market economy with low unemployment, a highly skilled labor force, and a per capita GDP larger than that of the big Western European economies. The Swiss in recent years have brought their economic practices largely into conformity with the EU's to enhance their international competitiveness. Switzerland remains a safe haven for investors, because it has maintained a degree of bank secrecy and has kept up the franc's long-term external value. Reflecting the anemic economic conditions of Europe, GDP growth dropped in 2001 to about 0.8%, to 0.2% in 2002, and to -0.3% in 2003.
Electricity - consumption 53.43 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - exports 34.54 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - imports 24.1 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - production 68.68 billion kWh (2001)
Elevation extremes lowest point: Lake Maggiore 195 m

highest point: Dufourspitze 4,634 m
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
Ethnic groups German 65%, French 18%, Italian 10%, Romansch 1%, other 6%
Exchange rates Swiss francs per US dollar - 1.3467 (2003), 1.5586 (2002), 1.6876 (2001), 1.6888 (2000), 1.5022 (1999)
Executive branch chief of state: President Samuel SCHMID (since 1 January 2005); Vice President Moritz LEUENBERGER (since 1 January 2005); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government

head of government: President Samuel SCHMID (since 1 January 2005); Vice President Moritz LEUENBERGER (since 1 January 2005); note - the president is both the chief of state and head of government

cabinet: Federal Council or Bundesrat (in German), Conseil Federal (in French), Consiglio Federale (in Italian) elected by the Federal Assembly usually from among its own 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 one-year terms that run concurrently; election last held 8 December 2004 (next to be held December 2005)

election results: Samuel SCHMID elected president; percent of Federal Assembly vote - 70.7%; Moritz LEUENBERGER elected vice president; percent of legislative vote - 64.8%
Exports 34.54 billion kWh (2001)
Exports $110 billion f.o.b. (2003 est.)
Exports 0 cu m (2001 est.)
Exports 10,420 bbl/day (2001)
Exports - commodities machinery, chemicals, metals, watches, agricultural products
Exports - partners Germany 20.8%, US 11.3%, France 8.7%, Italy 8.3%, UK 4.9%, Japan 4% (2003)
Fiscal year calendar year
Flag description red square with a bold, equilateral white cross in the center that does not extend to the edges of the flag
GDP purchasing power parity - $239.3 billion (2003 est.)
GDP - composition by sector agriculture: 1.5%

industry: 34%

services: 64.5% (2003 est.)
GDP - per capita purchasing power parity - $32,700 (2003 est.)
GDP - real growth rate -0.5% (2003 est.)
Geographic coordinates 47 00 N, 8 00 E
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
Heliports 2 (2003 est.)
Highways total: 71,011 km

paved: 71,011 km (including 1,638 of expressways)

unpaved: 0 km (2000)
Household income or consumption by percentage share lowest 10%: 2.6%

highest 10%: 25.2% (1992)
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 and Southwest Asian heroin
Imports 24.1 billion kWh (2001)
Imports $102.2 billion f.o.b. (2003 est.)
Imports 3.093 billion cu m (2001 est.)
Imports 289,500 bbl/day (2001)
Imports - commodities machinery, chemicals, vehicles, metals; agricultural products, textiles
Imports - partners Germany 32.3%, France 10.8%, Italy 10.7%, US 5.5%, Netherlands 5%, Austria 4.2%, UK 4.1% (2003)
Independence 1 August 1291 (founding of the Swiss Confederation)
Industrial production growth rate 0.4% (2003)
Industries machinery, chemicals, watches, textiles, precision instruments
Infant mortality rate total: 4.43 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 4.94 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 3.89 deaths/1,000 live births (2004 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 0.6% (2003 est.)
International organization participation ACCT, AfDB, AsDB, Australia Group, BIS, CE, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, EFTA, ESA, FAO, G-10, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt, ICFTU, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, LAIA (observer), MIGA, MONUC, NAM (guest), NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OPCW, OSCE, Paris Club, PCA, PFP, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNITAR, UNMEE, UNMIK, UNOMIG, UNTSO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTO, ZC
Irrigated land 250 sq km (1998 est.)
Judicial branch Federal Supreme Court (judges elected for six-year terms by the Federal Assembly)
Labor force 3.72 million (2003)
Labor force - by occupation agriculture 4.6%, industry 26.3%, services 69.1% (1998)
Land boundaries total: 1,852 km

border countries: Austria 164 km, France 573 km, Italy 740 km, Liechtenstein 41 km, Germany 334 km
Land use arable land: 10.42%

permanent crops: 0.61%

other: 88.97% (2001)
Languages German (official) 63.7%, French (official) 19.2%, Italian (official) 7.6%, Romansch (official) 0.6%, other 8.9%
Legal system civil law system influenced by customary law; judicial review of legislative acts, except with respect to federal decrees of general obligatory character; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction, with reservations
Legislative branch bicameral Federal Assembly or Bundesversammlung (in German), Assemblee Federale (in French), Assemblea Federale (in Italian) consists of the Council of States or Standerat (in German), Conseil des Etats (in French), Consiglio degli Stati (in Italian) (46 seats - members serve four-year terms) and the National Council or Nationalrat (in German), Conseil National (in French), Consiglio Nazionale (in Italian) (200 seats - members are elected by popular vote on the basis of proportional representation to serve four-year terms)

elections: Council of States - last held in most cantons 19 October 2003 (each canton determines when the next election will be held); National Council - last held 19 October 2003 (next to be held NA October 2007)

election results: Council of States - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - CVP 15, FDP 14, SVP 8, SPS 6, other 3; National Council - percent of vote by party - SVP 26.6%, SPS 23.3%, FDP 17.3%, CVP 14.4%, Greens 7.4%, other small parties all under 5%; seats by party - SVP 55, SPS 54, FDP 36, CVP 28, Green Party 13, other small parties 14
Life expectancy at birth total population: 80.31 years

male: 77.51 years

female: 83.27 years (2004 est.)
Literacy definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 99% (1980 est.)


Location Central Europe, east of France, north of Italy
Map references Europe
Maritime claims none (landlocked)
Merchant marine total: 30 ships (1,000 GRT or over) 604,843 GRT/1,050,914 DWT

by type: bulk 15, cargo 6, chemical tanker 3, container 3, petroleum tanker 2, specialized tanker 1

foreign-owned: Belgium 1, Netherlands 1, United Kingdom 6, United States 1

registered in other countries: 182 (2004 est.)
Military branches Land Forces, Air Force
Military expenditures - dollar figure $2.548 billion (FY01)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP 1% (FY01)
Military manpower - availability males age 15-49: 1,890,091 (2004 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service males age 15-49: 1,606,391 (2004 est.)
Military manpower - reaching military age annually males: 45,654 (2004 est.)
National holiday Founding of the Swiss Confederation, 1 August (1291)
Nationality noun: Swiss (singular and plural)

adjective: Swiss
Natural hazards avalanches, landslides, flash floods
Natural resources hydropower potential, timber, salt
Net migration rate 4.05 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2004 est.)
Pipelines gas 1,831 km; oil 94 km; refined products 7 km (2004)
Political parties and leaders Green Party (Grune Partei der Schweiz or Grune, Parti Ecologiste Suisse or Les Verts, Partito Ecologista Svizzero or I Verdi, Partida Ecologica Svizra or La Verda) [Ruth GENNER]; Christian Democratic People's Party (Christichdemokratische Volkspartei der Schweiz or CVP, Parti Democrate-Chretien Suisse or PDC, Partito Democratico-Cristiano Popolare Svizzero or PDC, Partida Cristiandemocratica dalla Svizra or PCD) [Doris LEUTHARD, president]; Radical Free Democratic Party (Freisinnig-Demokratische Partei der Schweiz or FDP, Parti Radical-Democratique Suisse or PRD, Partitio Liberal-Radicale Svizzero or PLR) [Marianne KLEINER-SCHLAEPFER, president]; Social Democratic Party (Sozialdemokratische Partei der Schweiz or SPS, Parti Socialist Suisse or PSS, Partito Socialista Svizzero or PSS, Partida Socialdemocratica de la Svizra or PSS) [Hans-Juerg FEHR, president]; Swiss People's Party (Schweizerische Volkspartei or SVP, Union Democratique du Centre or UDC, Unione Democratica de Centro or UDC, Uniun Democratica dal Center or UDC) [Ueli MAURER, president]; and other minor parties
Political pressure groups and leaders NA
Population 7,450,867 (July 2004 est.)
Population below poverty line NA
Population growth rate 0.54% (2004 est.)
Ports and harbors Basel
Radio broadcast stations AM 4, FM 113 (plus many low power stations), shortwave 2 (1998)
Railways total: 4,533 km

standard gauge: 3,483 km 1.435-m gauge (3,472 km electrified)

narrow gauge: 1,004 km 1.000-m gauge (974 km electrified); 46 km 0.800-m gauge (46 km electrified) (2003)
Religions Roman Catholic 46.1%, Protestant 40%, other 5%, none 8.9% (1990)
Sex ratio at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female

under 15 years: 1.08 male(s)/female

15-64 years: 1.02 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.69 male(s)/female

total population: 0.97 male(s)/female (2004 est.)
Suffrage 18 years of age; universal
Telephone system general assessment: excellent domestic and international services

domestic: extensive cable and microwave radio relay networks

international: country code - 41; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean and Indian Ocean)
Telephones - main lines in use 5.419 million (2002)
Telephones - mobile cellular 6.172 million (2003)
Television broadcast stations 115 (plus 1,919 repeaters) (1995)
Terrain mostly mountains (Alps in south, Jura in northwest) with a central plateau of rolling hills, plains, and large lakes
Total fertility rate 1.42 children born/woman (2004 est.)
Unemployment rate 3.7% (2003 est.)
Waterways 65 km

note: Rhine River between Basel-Rheinfelden and Schaffhausen-Bodensee, some canals, and 12 navigable lakes (2003)
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