Karolos Papoulias was received Didier Burkhalter at the Lohn Manor in Kehrsatz. The ensuing talks – which were attended by Federal Councillor Simonetta Sommaruga, head of the Federal Department of Justice and Police (FDJP) – provided an opportunity to give due recognition to the two countries' friendly and long-standing bilateral relations. Both delegations discussed possibilities for strengthening ties between the two countries in the field of education and research, including the 50th anniversary of the excavations in Eretria carried out by the Swiss School of Archaeology in Greece.

Media release, 2 May 2014

Bilateral relations between Switzerland and Greece

The two countries maintain very good and close relations, with Switzerland exporting goods worth CHF 906 million to Greece in 2013. The major industrial exports include pharmaceuticals (68%), watch and clock industry products (9%), chemicals (8%) and machinery (4%). At the end of 2011, Switzerland was the eleventh largest foreign investor in Greece, mainly in trade (44%), industry (42%), and the hotel and restaurant sector (6%). There are around 60 Swiss companies in Greece employing up to 6400 people.

Switzerland is providing support to the TAP project (Trans Adriatic Pipeline) that is expected to to transport Azerbaijani gas to Italy via Georgia, Turkey, Greece and Albania.

As a Schengen member state, Switzerland regularly deploys its border guards to Greece's external borders as part of "Frontex", half of whom are stationed in Greece and Bulgaria.

Bilateral relations between Switzerland and Greece

Mutual visits

In 2013, diplomatic visits between the two countries were stepped up. Federal Councillor Simonetta Sommaruga visited the Hellenic Republic in April 2013. In September 2013, a delegation of Greek MPs headed by the speaker of the parliament, Evangelos-Vasileios Meimarakis, paid a visit to Bern.

Close ties in the field of culture, education and research. This year the Swiss School of Archaeology in Greece is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the first excavations carried out in Eretria on the Greek island of Euboea.

Swiss School of Archeology in Greece