Geneva, Jan. 3, 2024: Switzerland said that it has abolished customs duties on imported industrial goods in order to reduce high consumer prices.
The State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) on Tuesday in Bern announced that as a result, the country has foregone around 600 million Swiss francs ($706 million) in annual revenue.
The cancellation affects not only consumer products, but also raw materials, semi-finished products and machinery. However, customs duties on agricultural products remain in place.
Free trade agreements between Switzerland and the European Union as well as 43 other states or groups of states were already in force.
However, the measure is also expected to save at least 100 million Swiss francs in administrative costs each year.
As SECO expert Thomas Zimmermann explained, customs duties have only accounted for around 1.5 per cent of government revenue in recent years.
But the duties reduced the competitiveness of the Swiss economy and contributed to the high prices, which were significantly higher than in neighboring countries.