Trade Compliance in Switzerland

Overview by
International Conventions
Member of World Trade Organisation
Member of OECD
Party to the Kyoto Protocol
Party to the Washington Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora
Party to the Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and Their Disposal
Party to the Montreal Protocol on Substances That Deplete the Ozone Layer
Party to the Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls For Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies
Party of the International Coffee Agreement 2001
Main International Economic Cooperation
Switzerland has a customs union with Liechtenstein in 1924. Switzerland is a member of European Free Trade Association (EFTA). Other members are Liechtenstein, Iceland, and Norway. Switzerland has signed bilateral agreements with the EU that guarantee many of the same economic advantages and lowered barriers to trade that EU members enjoy.The USA and Switzerland have formed a “Trade and Investment Cooperation Forum” to promote mutual trade. Switzerland also signed last february, 2009 a Free-Trade Agreement with Japan allowing the exemption of customs duties for 99 % of trade transactions between these two countries, within 10 years. Finally, Switzerland has signed free trade agreements with the States of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and Albania.
Party of the ATA Convention on Temporary Admissions and Use of the Carnets

As a Reminder, the ATA is a System Allowing the Free Movement of Goods Across Frontiers and Their Temporary Admission Into a Customs Territory With Relief From Duties and Taxes. The Goods Are Covered By a Single Document Known as the ATA Carnet That is Secured By an International Guarantee System.
Look Up the Other Member Countries And Read the Web Pages of the World Customs Organization Devoted to the ATA Carnet.
Party of the TIR Convention

As a Reminder, the TIR Convention and its Transit Regime Contribute to the Facilitation of International Transport, Especially International Road Transport, Not Only in Europe and the Middle East, But Also in Other Parts of the World, Such as Africa and Latin America.
The UNCTAD Website Allows You to Read the TIR Convention, See the List of Member Countries And to Find Further Information.
Accompanying Documents For Imports
A commercial invoice in duplicate or triplicate is sufficient for importing and custom clearance. The invoice should contain the following details: description of the products and packaging, gross and net weight of each package, quantity (in metric terms), country of origin, and CIF value to the Swiss border. As Swiss duties are specific, indication of value is required only for statistical purposes. No consular or other stamp is required.
Free Zones
None. However companies (both local and foreign-owned) can utilize duty- free warehouses to import goods into Switzerland without paying any tax and duties if the goods are subsequently re-exported to third countries.
For Further Information
Federal Customs Administration
State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO)
Non Tariff Barriers
Switzerland has a strict policy for import of agricultural biotechnology products. It involves a lengthy approval process. Quotas exist for import of certain products (mainly food items) which vary from year to year vary from year to year depending upon the size of harvests, volume of stocks and market requirements. These quotas are granted only to importers based in Switzerland and they need an import license. Import licenses are also required for certain products not subject to quotas, but which are covered by special regulations concerned with public health, plant health, quarantine (plants), veterinary regulations; regulations concerning the protection of endangered species, safety measures, price control (for certain textile products).
Sectors or Products For Which Commercial Disagreements Have Been Registered With the WTO
For details, visit: World Trade Organization.
Assessment of Commercial Policy
Country’s commercial policy, as seen by the WTO.
Barriers to exchanges, inventoried by the United States
Barriers to exchanges, inventoried by the EU.
Sanitary and phytosanitary barriers, inventoried by the EU.
Find more on about Trade Policy in Switzerland.

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