46 Facts About Switzerland


Switzerland, officially the Swiss Confederation, is a landlocked country located at the confluence of Western, Central and Southern Europe.

FactSnippet No. 435,228

Switzerland is bordered by Italy to the south, France to the west, Germany to the north and Austria and Liechtenstein to the east.

FactSnippet No. 435,229

Switzerland is the birthplace of the Red Cross, one of the world's oldest and best known humanitarian organisations.

FactSnippet No. 435,230

English name Switzerland is a portmanteau of Switzer, an obsolete term for a Swiss person which was in use during the 16th to 19th centuries, and land.

FactSnippet No. 435,231

State of Switzerland took its present form with the adoption of the Swiss Federal Constitution in 1848.

FactSnippet No. 435,232

Switzerland's precursors established a defensive alliance in 1291, forming a loose confederation that persisted for centuries.

FactSnippet No. 435,233

The oldest known farming settlements in Switzerland, which were found at Gachlingen, date to around 5300 BC.

FactSnippet No. 435,234

In 1920, Switzerland joined the League of Nations, which was based in Geneva, after it was exempted from military requirements.

FactSnippet No. 435,235

Switzerland was able to remain independent through a combination of military deterrence, concessions to Germany, and good fortune, as larger events during the war intervened.

FactSnippet No. 435,236

Switzerland was an important base for espionage by both sides and often mediated communications between the Axis and Allied powers.

FactSnippet No. 435,237

Switzerland's trade was blockaded by both the Allies and the Axis.

FactSnippet No. 435,238

Between 1940 and 1945, Switzerland was bombed by the Allies, causing fatalities and property damage.

FactSnippet No. 435,239

Switzerland was the last Western republic to grant women the right to vote.

FactSnippet No. 435,240

In 2002 Switzerland became a full member of the United Nations, leaving Vatican City as the last widely recognised state without full UN membership.

FactSnippet No. 435,241

Switzerland is a founding member of the EFTA but not the European Economic Area.

FactSnippet No. 435,242

Switzerland contains two small enclaves: Busingen belongs to Germany, while Campione d'Italia belongs to Italy.

FactSnippet No. 435,243

Switzerland contains two terrestrial ecoregions: Western European broadleaf forests and Alps conifer and mixed forests.

FactSnippet No. 435,244

Switzerland had a 2019 Forest Landscape Integrity Index mean score of 3.

FactSnippet No. 435,245

Switzerland has a dense network of complementary large, medium and small towns.

FactSnippet No. 435,246

Traditionally, Switzerland avoids alliances that might entail military, political, or direct economic action and has been neutral since the end of its expansion in 1515.

FactSnippet No. 435,247

Switzerland maintains diplomatic relations with almost all countries and historically has served as an intermediary between other states.

FactSnippet No. 435,248

Switzerland is not a member of the European Union; the Swiss people have consistently rejected membership since the early 1990s.

FactSnippet No. 435,249

Switzerland was a founding member and hosted the League of Nations.

FactSnippet No. 435,250

Thus as of 2022, no city in Switzerland has the official status either of capital or of Federal City.

FactSnippet No. 435,251

Switzerland had the highest European rating in the Index of Economic Freedom 2010, while providing significant public services.

FactSnippet No. 435,252

Much of the 20th century, Switzerland was the wealthiest country in Europe by a considerable margin.

FactSnippet No. 435,253

Switzerland has one of the world's largest account balances as a percentage of GDP.

FactSnippet No. 435,254

Apart from agriculture, economic and trade barriers between the European Union and Switzerland are minimal, and Switzerland has free trade agreements with many countries.

FactSnippet No. 435,255

Switzerland is a member of the European Free Trade Association.

FactSnippet No. 435,256

Switzerland has a more flexible labor market than neighbouring countries and the unemployment rate is consistently low.

FactSnippet No. 435,257

Education in Switzerland is diverse, because the constitution of Switzerland delegates the operation for the school system to the cantons.

FactSnippet No. 435,258

Switzerland operates the world's longest and deepest railway tunnel and the first flat, low-level route through the Alps, the 57.

FactSnippet No. 435,259

Switzerland has a publicly managed, toll-free road network financed by highway permits as well as vehicle and gasoline taxes.

FactSnippet No. 435,260

Switzerland has one of the best environmental records among developed nations.

FactSnippet No. 435,261

Switzerland has an economic system for garbage disposal, which is based mostly on recycling and energy-producing incinerators.

FactSnippet No. 435,262

Switzerland has one of the world's oldest populations, with an average age of 42.

FactSnippet No. 435,263

In reply to one critical report, the Federal Council noted that "racism unfortunately is present in Switzerland", but stated that the high proportion of foreign citizens in the country, as well as the generally successful integration of foreigners, underlined Switzerland's openness.

FactSnippet No. 435,264

These include terms from Switzerland's surrounding language cultures, from similar terms in another language (Italian azione used not only as act but as discount from German Aktion).

FactSnippet No. 435,265

Switzerland is home to notable contributors to literature, art, architecture, music and sciences.

FactSnippet No. 435,266

Switzerland has no official state religion, though most of the cantons recognise official churches, either the Catholic Church or the Swiss Reformed Church.

FactSnippet No. 435,267

Switzerland has historically boasted the world's greatest number of newspaper titles relative to its population and size.

FactSnippet No. 435,268

Switzerland hosted the 1954 FIFA World Cup and was the joint host, with Austria, of the UEFA Euro 2008 tournament.

FactSnippet No. 435,269

In 2009, Switzerland hosted the IIHF World Championship for the 10th time.

FactSnippet No. 435,270

Switzerland won 20 Grand Slam tournaments overall including a record 8 Wimbledon titles.

FactSnippet No. 435,271

Motorsport racecourses and events were banned in Switzerland following the 1955 Le Mans disaster with exceptions for events such as Hillclimbing.

FactSnippet No. 435,272

In June 2007 the Swiss National Council, one house of the Federal Assembly of Switzerland, voted to overturn the ban, however the other house, the Swiss Council of States rejected the change and the ban remains in place.

FactSnippet No. 435,273