Facts

Location

  

Central Europe, east of France, north of Italy

Area in total

41,290 sq km
        

Coastline

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

Climate

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

Elevation extremes

lowest point: Lake Maggiore 195 m highest point: Dufourspitze 4,634 m

Natural hazards avalanches, landslides, flash floods
Natural Resources hydropower potential, timber, salt

Population

7,523,934
Age structure

0-14 years:16.3%
15-64 years: 68.1%
65 years and over: 15.6%
Median age: total: 40.1 years
            male: 39 years
          female: 41.1 years

Ethnic groups

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

Religions

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

Languages 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 0.5%, other 2.8% (2000 census)
National holiday

Founding of the Swiss Confederation, 1 August

GDP

1.8%

GDP - per capita

$32,300

Government type

formally a confederation, but similar in structure to a federal republic

Capital

Bern
Head of State

President Moritz LEUENBERGER
Major Trading Partners

EU (esp. Germany, France, Italy, UK), US, Japan

Agriculture products

grains, fruits, vegetables; meat, eggs

Industries

machinery, chemicals, watches, textiles, precision instruments

Currency

Swiss franc (CHF)

Internet country code

.ch

Internet users

1,384,800 (2005)

Dialing Code

41

Electricity

230 V, 50 Hz

Tipping A 15 percent service charge is included in almost all bills, so no additional tip is necessary.

Flag

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