Swiss Exports inclined in 2021 to a new record

Translated by Virginia F. Bodmer-Altura

The Covid Pandemic reflected some deep shadows on the Swiss Foreign Trade in 2020, but in 2021 it resisted in absolute figures.  Exports show a plus of 15.2 %, thus another record level, whereas imports advanced by 10.1. %. The divergent growth tempo between exports and imports increased the trade balance to CHF 58.7 billion.

  • Exüports to the USA make them in 2021 the largest goods consumer of Switzerland
  • External trade with China reaches a new level
  • Watches represent one third plus more exports, thus resulting in a new sales record
  • Imports – Bijouterie and jewellery were below CHF 8.8 bilion below the pre-corona value.


Total exports reached in the the forth quarter of 2021 CHF 259.5 Million, compared to 2020 with CHF 225.3 million.vs. 2020 with CHF 182.3 million.

Total imports amounted to CHF 200.8 million versus CHF 182.3 in 2020.

Total exports widened within a year to 15.2 % or in real terms +9.5 %. Also an increasing tendence resulted for Machinery and Electronics, among also textile machinery.

Total imports increased  by 10.1 % or in real terms 1.1 %, however CHF 4.4 billion below the pre-corona level.

All sectorial levels showed a plus. Chemicals and pharmaceutical products increased by CHFD +14..4 billion.  Immunological products reported a plus by one fourth or CHF 8.6 billion.

Watches showed an increase of one third to CHF  +5.3 billion. Impressing were the similar hight growth figures of the exports of Bijouterie and Jewellery   (CHF + 2.8 billion), Machinery and Electronics and metals added one tenth, respectively one fifth to CJEF 2.7 billion and CHF + 2.6 billion. The export rate of Precision Instruments increase 11.2 % or CHF 1.8 billion.

In all of the major economic spaces Swiss exporters were able to deliver more. The exports to Europe were in the two digit growth line (+18.1 % or +CHF 21.9. billion, and North America +17.0 % or + CHF 7.4 billion. Also dispatches to Asia grew by 9.0 % or +CHF 4.4 billion, whereas the exports to Hong Kon increased by 23 %. China (new record), Japan and Singapore were contributing to Asia’s growth.

In Europe foremost Spain was of importance with +CHF 5.1 billion. Pluses showed also Germany, France and Italy, cumulating +CHF 9.2 billion. Sales to the USA grew to CHF 7.4 billion or + 18.8 %, thus the USA became the most important consumer of Swiss products since 1954 and replaces Germany.

Switzerland imported in 2021 more goods from the three important economic spaces. From Europe + 10.9 %  or a plus of CHF 13.9 billion., foremost from Spain and France (+ one fifth). The highest contribution delivered Germany with + CHF 5.5 billion (+ 11.2 %) The imports from Asia grew by 8.0 % or CHF 3.1 billion. Alone imports from China increased by CH 1.8 billion registering a new record. Also imports from South Korea increased by CHF 1.1 billion, within a year these doubled. The deliveries from North America increased by 6.6 % or CHF 803 million (thereof USA + CHF 643 million)