Trading Places

By Mark Andrews

The Bridge. Autumn 2016.

The free trade agreement between China and Switzerland came into effect two years ago. David Braun, Head of Economic, Financial and Commercial Section of the Swiss Embassy in the People’s Republic of China talks to The Bridge about what is has meant to trade between the two countries on a macro level.

Two years on from the implementation of the Sino-Swiss Free Trade Agreement FTA what do you feel the key benefits have been?

Generally speaking, the FTA created supportive framework conditions for the exchange of goods, and for contributing to a greener and more sustainable economy. Looking at the trade figures, the strongest increase in terms of absolute growth in the past year was in the area of chemicals: pharmaceuticals and biotech (+13%), and watches (+4.9%).

In recent years, Switzerland has become China’s ninth largest import partner, whereas China consistently ranks as the number six source of imports to Switzerland. This being said, the FTA needs time to develop to its full potential, but existing issues are being addressed through the well established communication channels between the Chinese and Swiss experts.

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Mark Andrews has written about everything from Japanese houses to heli hikes on New Zealand glaciers, test drives of Chinese cars to bar and restaurant reviews. He currently specialises in travel articles and reviews of Chinese cars plus articles about the Chinese auto industry.

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