European Union

Flags of the European Union member states, 2013
Flags of the 28 member states of the European Union © European Commission

The European Union (EU) is of importance to Switzerland from an economic, political and cultural standpoint. The EU shares values, languages and part of its history with Switzerland. Owing to its central location, stature as an economic and financial centre and its involvement in foreign affairs, Switzerland is an important partner for the EU as well.

The EU is Switzerland's main trading partner. More than half of Swiss exports go to the EU and almost three quarters of imports come from EU countries. Switzerland is one of the EU's most important trading partners alongside the USA and China. Its cooperation with the EU is governed by approximately 20 core agreements and over 100 additional bilateral agreements.

Member states

The EU is made up of 28 member states. As the dominant political and economic power in Europe, the EU guarantees stability, security and shared prosperity for the continent. A strong EU is therefore also in Switzerland's interest.