The country is ideally situated in the middle of the most prosperous countries of the European Union: Germany, France, Italy and Austria. However, Switzerland is not a member of the European Union. The country keeps its own currency (the Swiss franc) and its own regulations. But it has negotiated numerous bilateral agreements with the EU over the past 30 years. These agreements allow many products made in Switzerland to have privileged access to the European Union’s internal market.
Switzerland is neutral in international politics. Internally, it is a purely trilingual federation (French, German, Italian) which is very stable and crisis-free. Apart from hydroelectricity, Switzerland has very few natural resources. This is why it has built its prosperity around certain key sectors such as banking, hotels, tourism and watchmaking. It has few very large companies but is very rich in small and medium-sized enterprises that are very flexible and provide products and services of very high technological value, often oriented towards sustainable development.
In general, the public authorities strongly encourage business. Switzerland being a federal country, each canton has its own system which must be compatible with the country’s constitution. In terms of taxation, some cantons (such as Zug, north of Zurich) offer particularly favourable conditions for companies.
The purpose of the pages in this section is to provide information on all the possibilities offered in Switzerland as well as on the legal and fiscal framework.