Statistical information Switzerland 1990Switzerland

Map of Switzerland | Geography | People | Government | Economy | Energy | Communication
Military | Transportation | Transnational Issues | Year:  | More stats

Switzerland in the World
Switzerland in the World


Switzerland - Introduction 1990
top of page

Background: Switzerland's independence and neutrality have long been honored by the major European powers and Switzerland did not participate in either World War I or II. The political and economic integration of Europe since World War II may be rendering obsolete Switzerland's concern for neutrality.

Switzerland - Geography 1990
top of page


Geographic coordinates

Map reference


Land boundaries: 1,852 km total; Austria 164 km, France 573 km, Italy 740 km, Liechtenstein 41 km, FRG 334 km

Coastline: none--landlocked

Maritime claims: none--landlocked

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

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


Natural resources: hydropower potential, timber, salt
Land use

Land use: 10% arable land; 1% permanent crops; 40% meadows and pastures; 26% forest and woodland; 23% other; includes 1% irrigated

Irrigated land

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards

Note: landlocked; crossroads of northern and southern Europe

Switzerland - People 1990
top of page

Population: 6,742,461 (July 1990), growth rate 0.6% (1990)

Nationality: noun--Swiss (sing. & pl.; adjective--Swiss

Ethnic groups: total population--65% German, 18% French, 10% Italian, 1% Romansch, 6% other; Swiss nationals--74% German, 20% French, 4% Italian, 1% Romansch, 1% other

Languages: total population--65% German, 18% French, 12% Italian, 1% Romansch, 4% other; Swiss nationals--74% German, 20% French, 4% Italian, 1% Romansch, 1% other

Religions: 49% Roman Catholic, 48% Protestant, 0.3% Jewish

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate

Birth rate: 12 births/1000 population (1990)

Death rate: 9 deaths/1000 population (1990)

Net migration rate: 3 migrants/1000 population (1990)

Population distribution


Major urban areas

Current issues: dominated by Alps

Air pollutants

Sex ratio

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate: 5 deaths/1000 live births (1990)

Life expectancy at birth: 75 years male, 83 years female (1990)

Total fertility rate: 1.6 children born/woman (1990)

Contraceptive prevalence rate

Drinking water source

Current health expenditure

Physicians density

Hospital bed density

Sanitation facility access


Major infectious diseases

Obesity adult prevalence rate

Alcohol consumption

Tobacco use

Children under the age of 5 years underweight

Education expenditures

Literacy: 99%

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment

Switzerland - Government 1990
top of page

Country name: conventional long form: Swiss Confederation

Government type: federal republic

Capital: Bern

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

Dependent areas

Independence: 1 August 1291

National holiday: Anniversary of the Founding of the Swiss Confederation, 1 August (1291)

Constitution: 29 May 1874

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

International law organization participation


Suffrage: universal at age 20

Executive branch: Chief of State and Head of Government--President Arnold KOLLER (1990 calendar year; presidency rotates annually; Vice President Flavio COTTI (term runs concurrently with that of president)

Legislative branch: Army, Air Force

Judicial branch: Federal Supreme Court

Political parties and leaders

International organization participation: ADB, CCC, Council of Europe, DAC, EFTA, ESA, FAO, GATT, IAEA, ICAC, ICAO, ICO, IDB--Inter-American Development Bank, IEA, IFAD, ILO, IMO, INTELSAT, INTERPOL, IPU, ITU, IWC--International Wheat Council, OECD, UNESCO, UPU, WCL, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WSG, WTO; permanent observer status at the UN

Diplomatic representation
In the us: Ambassador Edouard BRUNNER; Chancery at 2,900 Cathedral Avenue NW, Washington DC 20,008; telephone (202) 745-7,900; there are Swiss Consulates General in Atlanta, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, and San Francisco; US--Ambassador Joseph B. GUILDENHORN; Embassy at Jubilaeumstrasse 93, 3,005 Bern; telephone p41o (31) 437,011; there is a Branch Office of the Embassy in Geneva and a Consulate General in Zurich

Flag descriptionflag of Switzerland: red square with a bold, equilateral white cross in the center that does not extend to the edges of the flag

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage

Switzerland - Economy 1990
top of page

Economy overview: Switzerland's economic success is matched in few, if any, other nations. Per capita output, general living standards, education and science, health care, and diet are unsurpassed in Europe. Inflation remains low because of sound government policy and harmonious labor-management relations. Unemployment is negligible, a marked contrast to the larger economies of Western Europe. This economic stability helps promote the important banking and tourist sectors. Since World War II, Switzerland's economy has adjusted smoothly to the great changes in output and trade patterns in Europe and presumably can adjust to the challenges of the 1990s, in particular, the further economic integration of Western Europe and the amazingly rapid changes in East European political/economic prospects.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate

Real gdp per capita ppp

Gross national saving
Gdp composition by sector of origin

Gdp composition by end use

Gdp composition by sector of origin

Agriculture products: dairy farming predominates; less than 50% self-sufficient; food shortages--fish, refined sugar, fats and oils (other than butter), grains, eggs, fruits, vegetables, meat

Industries: machinery, chemicals, watches, textiles, precision instruments

Industrial production growth rate: 7.0% (1988)

Labor force:
3,220,000; 841,000 foreign workers, mostly Italian; 42%
services, 39%
industry and crafts, 11% government, 7% agriculture and forestry, 1% other (1988)

Labor force

Unemployment rate: 0.5% (1989 est.)

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share

Distribution of family income gini index

Budget: revenues $17.0 billion; expenditures $16.8 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (1988)

Public debt

Taxes and other revenues


Fiscal year: calendar year

Current account balance

Inflation rate consumer prices

Central bank discount rate

Commercial bank prime lending rate

Stock of narrow money

Stock of broad money

Stock of domestic credit

Market value of publicly traded shares

Current account balance

Exports: $51.2 billion (f.o.b., 1988)
Commodities: machinery and equipment, precision instruments, metal products, foodstuffs, textiles and clothing
Partners: Europe 64% (EC 56%, other 8%), US 9%, Japan 4%

Imports: $57.2 billion (c.i.f., 1988)
Commodities: agricultural products, machinery and transportation equipment, chemicals, textiles, construction materials
Partners: Europe 79% (EC 72%, other 7%), US 5%

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external: $NA

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: Swiss francs, franken, or franchi (SwF) per US$1--1.5150 (January 1990), 1.6359 (1989), 1.4633 (1988), 1.4912 (1987), 1.7989 (1986), 2.4571 (1985)

Switzerland - Energy 1990
top of page

Electricity access

Electricity production

Electricity consumption

Electricity exports

Electricity imports

Electricity installed generating capacity

Electricity transmission distribution losses

Electricity generation sources


Refined petroleum

Natural gas

Carbon dioxide emissions

Energy consumption per capita

Switzerland - Communication 1990
top of page

Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular

Telephone system

Broadcast media

Internet country code

Internet users

Broadband fixed subscriptions

Switzerland - Military 1990
top of page

Military expenditures
Percent of gdp: $1.2 billion (1989 est.)

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups

Switzerland - Transportation 1990
top of page

National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

Airports: 72 total, 70 usable; 42 with permanent-surface runways; 2 with runways over 3,659 m; 6 with runways 2,440-3,659 m; 17 with runways 1,220-2,439 m

Airports with paved runways

Airports with unpaved runways


Pipelines: 314 km crude oil; 1,506 km natural gas



Waterways: 65 km; Rhine (Basel to Rheinfelden, Schaffhausen to Bodensee; 12 navigable lakes

Merchant marine: 20 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 215,851 GRT/365,131 DWT; includes 4 cargo, 2 roll-on/roll-off cargo, 3 chemical tanker, 3 specialized liquid cargo, 8 bulk

Ports and terminals

Switzerland - Transnational issues 1990
top of page

Disputes international

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs

You found a piece of the puzzle

Please click here to complete it