International trade is an arena that is more often than not, marked by solid uncertainty. In fact, it may not be entirely incorrect to suggest that the only thing certain about the often volatile and unpredictable sphere of international trade is rabid uncertainty. And nothing could perhaps explain the said rationale other than suggesting that Switzerland’s main export destination is no longer Germany, a country that happened to be its long-standing trading partner and a behemoth contributor to trade, truth be told.
So that leaves us with a big question. Which country is bound to be Switzerland’s main export destination if it’s not Germany?
And there’s no rocket science theory to this. The United States is primed to replace Germany as Switzerland’s main export destination in the course of the next two years. In the words of Swiss Life’s chief economist Marc Brutsch, “the United States is likely to leapfrog Germany as Switzerland’s biggest export destination over the next two years.”
In addition to the above, here’s what’s important to note. The U.S. accounts for around 13.2 percent of trade exports from Switzerland, but that could increase to up to 17 percent in the coming years as the country reduces its reliance on its neighbor, Brütsch said. Currently, around 15 percent of Swiss exports go to Germany.
But to add more sense to the narrative, it’s important to note that the fact that Switzerland which happens to be a small, steady but open economy is heavily dependent on the economic vibes and events that shape up the rest of the world.
In that regard, the fact that Angela Merkel-land has been badly shaken up by volatilities in the automotive sector has impacted the Swiss economy badly. Furthermore, the German manufacturing malaise has also negatively impacted the Swiss economy, which up to this point, depended heavily on German imports.
But all of that said, it is pertinent to note the size of the German and Swiss trade from the course of the past:
Switzerland’s exports to Germany in the recent past were around $48.1 billion. Following Germany, the next biggest export destinations for the famous Alpine country happen to be the United States, China, India, and Hong Kong with trade estimates being $28.4 billion, $26.1 billion, and $15.5 billion respectively.
But all of that said, it ought to be told as to what exactly constituted Switzerland’s exports to Germany? Well, here’s what one needs to know:
Swiss Exports are based on gold, watches, and pharmaceuticals. The first place in Switzerland’s exports is occupied by gold with almost 20% and the second place is occupied by pharmaceuticals that represent almost 11.5% of the country’s total exports.
Switzerland Exports to Germany was a massive US$47.45 Billion during 2018, according to the United Nations COMTRADE database on international trade.
But apart from the above, a wide array of items have regularly been exported to Germany from Switzerland and these include- Organic chemicals, pearls and precious stones, machinery, even nuclear reactors and boilers apart from articles of iron and steel, aluminium, clocks and watches.