Doing business with/in Switzerland

Prosperity and Stability

Switzerland has the fourth highest per capita gross domestic product worldwide or, when adjusted at purchase power parity, the fifth highest. The high level of motivation of the employees, the strong link between its industry and trade with foreign countries, and the achievements of the services industry are the keys to these economic results. The nominal gross domestic product of USD 36,000 per capita is 60% higher than the EU average and 41% higher than in Germany and Austria.

Switzerland has always been a stable country. The inflation rate in recent years has continually remained below 1% and is, therefore, clearly lower than in the EU and US. Interest rates in Switzerland have remained low because of the high savings rate and large inflows of foreign money.

Main Pillars of the Swiss Economy

Switzerland has a leading position among industrialized countries in enabling the acquisition of new skills and technologies in the growth sectors of the future. This is thanks to the geographic concentration and intensive links between firms and with knowledge institutions in specific technology fields. Such highly competitive clusters are also highly appealing to new investors.

Today and in the future it is the following new technologies and clusters that act as the motors of the Swiss economy:

  • biotechnology
  • medical devices
  • information and communication technologies (ICT)
  • micro- and nanotechnology
  • environmental technology, and
  • shared services

Long-term, stable decision-making fundamentals, liberal legislation, protection of free competition and cooperative authorities encourage the establishment of headquarters and facilities in Switzerland for research and production activities.

Unique Geo-Strategic Location and Top Business Environment

Switzerland’s liberal economic system simplifies location decisions. Internationally recognized institutes consistently give the country top rankings for legal security, long-term stability, guaranteed protection of free competition and property ownership and minimal bureaucracy. These fundamental criteria position Switzerland as an advantageous European location for establishing a business.

Liberal Economic System

Switzerland has one of the most liberal and competitive economies in the world. The banking industry is one of the most important sectors of the Swiss economy. The laws regulating the banking system, and particularly the banking secrecy policies, offer extensive protection for domestic as well as foreign investors.

Investment Climate

Switzerland continues to be one of the most attractive locations for foreign direct investment. Independent studies, including those by the Economist Intelligence Unit, Ernst & Young’s Investment Monitor, and IMD’s World Competitiveness Yearbook, give the country consistently high marks on the criteria most important to decision-makers when selecting a business site.

The country offers many advantages and benefits for business investors, and our investment representatives work directly with companies to develop customized and attractive business structures.


Switzerland’s education system ranks among the best in the world and produces a well-qualified workforce at all levels. As a result of the high quality education system and the multicultural society, a large part of the population is fluent in multiple languages.

With respect to overall productivity, Switzerland ranks fifth among the world’s leading national economies. The workforce is generally highly motivated and strikes are almost non-existent.


The Swiss tax system is strongly influenced by the federal structure of the country. Emphasis is on direct taxes. By European standards, the tax burden in Switzerland is moderate – both for companies and individuals. The Value Added Tax (VAT) and custom duties are also moderate.

The federal structure leaves ample room for healthy competition between the Cantons. Numerous bilateral conventions prevent double taxation internationally. Switzerland, as a business location, is therefore also attractive from a tax viewpoint.

Invest in Switzerland

Location:Switzerland is the official Swiss information and advisory agency for companies and persons wishing to set up business activities in Switzerland. It is run by seco, the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs, in close co-operation with the Swiss cantons and the Swiss embassies and consulates abroad.