Page last modified 19 August 2023

 

213) Switzerland

Community

Area 41,277 square kilometres (land area 39,997 square kilometres)

Population,


1,687,900 (1817)

2,190,000 (1837)

2,392,740 (1850)

2,510,494 (1860)

2,655,000 (1870)

2,831,787 (1880)

2,934,057 (1888)

3,325,023 (1900)

4,066,400 (1930)

4,265,703 (1941)

4,714,992 (1950)

5,328,000 (1960)

6,181,000 (1970)

6,319,000 (1980)

6,716,000 (1990)

7,184,000 (2000)

7,825,000 (2010)

8,282,000 (2015)

8,517,000 (2018)


Ethnicity

Foreign nationals,


3.0% (1850)

11.6% (1900)

8.7% (1930)

20.7% (2006)

23.3% (2012)*


*Of these, Italian 15.6%; German 15.2%; Portugal 12,7%; France 5.6%; Tamil 6.3%; Serbia 5.3%; Turkey 3.8%; Spain 3.7%; Austria 2.0%

Religion, %

 

Christian

Protestant

Christian

R C

Jewish

Muslim

None

1850

59.3

40.6

1.0

 

 

1900

57.6

41.5

4.0

 

 

1930

57.0

41.0

1.5

 

 

1950

57.6

41.1

0.5

 

 

1960

52.7

45.5

 

 

 

1990

43.0

47.0

 

 

 

2000

35.3

41.8

0.2

4.3

11.8

2015

30.7

37.3

 

5.1

23.9

Birth and death rates Below replacement rate = 2.1

 

Fertility Rate

Birth

Rate

Infant

Mortality

Death

Rate

% Aged

Under 15

% Aged

Over

65

% Urban

1800

 

 

 

 

 

 

4.3

1850

 

 

 

 

 

 

7.3

1890

 

 

 

 

 

 

16.5

1911

 

23.8 (+9.0)

 

14.8

 

 

 

1933

 

16.4 (+4.6)

48.0

11.8

 

 

 

1944

 

 

42.0

 

 

 

 

1950

 

17.0 (+7.0)

29.0

10.0

23.5

9.6

48.2

1960

2.4

19.0 (+9.2)

22.0

9.8

24.1

10.1

51.0

1970

2.1

14.0 (+4.8)

15.0

9.2

23.8

11.2

57.4

1980

1.6

12.0 (+3.6)

8.0

9.4

20.0

13.8

57.1

1990

1.6

12.5 (+3.0)

7.0

9.5

17.0

14.6

73.2

2000

1.5

10.5 (+1.8)

5.0

8.7

17.5

15.3

73.3

2010

1.5

9.8 (+1.8)

4.0

8.0

15.1

16.9

73.7

2015

1.5

10.2 (+2.1)

3.8

8.1

14.8

18.0

73.9

2016

 

 

3.8

 

14.8

18.2

74.0

2017

1.5

10.3 (+2.4)

3.7

7.9

 

 

 

2018

 

 

3.7

 

14.9

18.6

 

Life expectancy,


52.3 (1910); 50.7 (M), 53.9 (F)

62.7 (1935); 60.7 (M), 64.6 (F)

69.2 (1952); 67.0 (M), 72.0 (F)

71.3 (1960); 68.7 (M), 74.1 (F)

73.0 (1970); 70.0 (M), 76.2 (F)

75.5 (1980); 72.2 (M), 78.9 (F)

77.2 (1990); 73.9 (M), 80.7 (F)

79.7 (2000); 76.9 (M), 82.6 (F)

82.2 (2010); 80.1 (M), 84.5 (F)

83.8 (2020); 81.9 (M), 85.7 (F)


Population of principal cities, 1,000s MA = Metropolitan Area

 

Basel

BERN

Geneva

Lausanne

Luzern1

Zurich2

1356

 

 

5.8

 

 

 

1400

 

 

6.5

 

 

 

1550

 

 

12

 

 

 

1700

 

 

18

 

 

 

1800

 

 

26

 

 

11

1850

22

27

38

17

10

 

1860

 

 

42

 

 

 

1870

 

 

 

26

14

57

1890

97

48

80

35

21

149

1900

113

65

105

56

30

151

1941

162

130

124

93

55

336

1950

184

147

145

107

61

390

1960

208

164

169

127

67

431

1970

205

170

170

 

 

 

1980

364 MA

282 MA

327 MA

225 MA

156 MA

707 MA

1990

360 MA

300 MA

395 MA

263 MA

160 MA

841 MA

2000

410 MA

325 MA

465 MA

295 MA

185 MA

950 MA

2008

494 MA

348 MA

513 MA

324 MA

205 MA

1,154 MA

2015

537 MA

410 MA

490 MA

420 MA

250 MA

1,315 MA

1Grew around a Benedictine monastery, established ca. 750.Tourism was boosted by the opening of the St Gotthard railway tunnel in 1982.

2Known to the Romans as Turicum, the city was invaded by the Alemanni in the 5th century.Zurich joined the Swiss Confederation in 1351.

Wealth; Gross Domestic Product (nominal values)

 

GDP,

US$ million

Total GDP,

% of USA

GDP per capita,

US$

GDP per capita

% of USA

1948

4,365

1.95

950

62.30

1956

5,975

1.67

 

 

1960

9,520

1.75

1,790

59.53

1965

11,460

1.54

2,620

68.44

1970

21,350

2.05

3,449

65.73

1975

55,900

3.42

8,721

111.52

1980

107,470

3.84

18,800

149.23

1985

96,450

2.29

16,600

90.86

1990

228,410

3.94

38,300

159.88

1995

307,260

4.15

48,500

161.30

2000

242,030

2.43

37,800

103.70

2005

365,900

2.79

54,800

123.68

2010

581,000

3.88

74,275

153.54

2015

671,000

3.72

81,000

144.11

2016

660,000

3.55

78,800

137.12

GDP by primary sector

 

Agriculture

% GDP

Agriculture

% employed

Industry

% GDP

Industry

% employed

Services

% GDP

Services

% employed

1960

 

11.0

 

50.0

 

38.0

1980

 

5.0

 

46.0

 

49.0

1990

3.5

6.4

34.5

37.4

62.0

55.4

2000

2.0

5.0

34.0

26.0

64.0

69.0

2010

1.2

3.4

27.5

23.4

71.3

73.2

2016

0.7

3.3

25.5

19.8

73.8

76.9

Communications

Language %, Official, German, French, Italian

 

French

German

Italian

Romansch

Other

1880

21.4

71.3

5.7

 

 

1900

21.8

69.8

5.3

1.6

8.9

1950

20.8

72.6

5.2

1.1

 

1960

18.9

69.3

9.5

0.9

 

1990

19.2

65.0

7.6

0.6

 

2000

20.4

63.7

6.5

0.5

9.0

2017

22.5

63.5

8.1

0.5

 

Literacy


99.7% (1900)

99.9% (1980 and after)


Physical communications � roads

 

Roads (km)

Motor vehicles

Cars

Commercial Vehicles

1947

 

 

82,147

29,993

1949

 

 

147,000

41,500

1955

 

327,000

271,000

 

1960

49,000

810,000

500,000

75,000

1962

 

 

630,357

116,918

1968

 

1,887,657

1,060,768

215,078

1980

65,000

2,702,266

2,246,752

228,400

1985

70,000

3,222,000

2,617,000

 

1990

 

 

2,985,000

 

1997

71,200

 

3,323,000

264,000

2000

 

 

3,545,000

279,000

2004

 

4,300,000

3,811,000

298,000

2011

71,464

4,567,000

4,163,000

 

 

 

 

4,458,000

 

Railways; 1st railway in Switzerland, 1844

Length, kilometres


24 (1850)

1,053 (1860)

1,422 (1870)

2,500 (1880)

3,070 (1890)

3,600 (1900)

4,524 (1910)

5,139 (1920)

5,228 (1930)

5,224 (1940)

5,192 (1945) (49.9% e)

5,168 (1950)

5,112 (1963) (57.1% e)

5,034 (1988)

5,040 (1995)

5,057 (2000)

5,021 (2002)

4,876 (2010) (85.6% e)


Urban metro systems, (kilometres)

Lausanne (opened 2008)

15.0 (2010, 2015)

Electronic communications, 1,000s, First telephone installed 1880. TV broadcasts began 1950.

 

Telephones (landlines)

Mobile Telephones

Radios

Televisions

PCs

Internet Users

1938

450

 

458

 

 

 

1943

568

 

676

 

 

 

1947

 

 

923

 

 

 

1950

890

 

1,037

 

 

 

1950

 

 

1,445

 

 

 

1956

770

 

 

 

 

 

1962

1,875

 

1,538

274

 

 

1968

2,686

 

 

 

 

 

1980

2,839

 

 

 

 

 

1987

 

5

 

 

 

 

1988

 

 

 

 

350

 

1990

3,943

125

5,682

2,400

600

 

1995

 

447

6,100

3,000

2,000

 

1998

 

 

 

 

 

1,200

2000

5,236

4,639

7,200

3,900

4,700

 

2005

 

6,847

 

 

6,430

3,700

2010

4,378

9,527

 

 

 

6,430

2016

4,029

11,283

 

 

 

7,313

2017

 

 

 

 

 

7,560

Tourism: Visitors to Switzerland,


4,108,859 (1958)

4,574,453 (1959)

6,000,041 (1968)

7,963,000 (1990)

6,946,000 (1995)

7,821,000 (2000)

7,229,000 (2005)

8,628,000 (2010)

9,305,000 (2015)