Official Name: Switzerland
Capital City: Bern
Official Languages: German, French, Italian, Romansch
Religion: Roman Catholic, Protestant
Currency: Swiss Franc (SFr.)
Time Zone: GMT + 1 hour
Country Domain: .ch
Country Tel Code: 41
Switzerland's reputation and impact in the world are significant. Its banks and financial institutions are among the largest in the world; its products - as diverse as pharmaceuticals, watches, and chocolate - are widely used and respected; and its scenery and sports facilities, especially its skiing, are world-famous.
Switzerland boasts a diverse cultural heritage and a mix of interesting people who are at once independent, reserved and conservative, efficient and productive, responsible and serious, political, and courteous.
The Swiss can be difficult to get to know, but over time, they can become the most genuine friends.
Switzerland is a federal state with a decentralized government. It is divided into 20 full cantons, and six half cantons, with more than 3,000 municipalities known as communes. Each level of government maintains a high degree of autonomy, resulting in differences from canton to canton, such as school curricula or insurance requirements.
Switzerland continues to remain outside the European Union, as well as the European Economic Area (EEA). In the past 10 years, Switzerland and the EU member states increased their economic and social security cooperation after signing seven bilateral agreements, including the Agreement on the Free Movement of People. Further bilateral talks yielded cooperative agreements on banking, taxation, and other economic matters, as well as participation in the Schengen agreements. Despite its centric geographic location and long-standing Swiss-EU cooperation, many Swiss are unswayed in their opposition to joining the EU.
Good-quality apartments and houses are available in the city, suburbs, and surrounding countryside in the major cities. As with most cities, the more central parts of Zurich and Geneva are essentially geared toward apartment dwellers, although houses sometimes become available in suburban areas. As a smaller city, Basel has some centrally-located residential areas in which houses are available to rent.
Switzerland's private schools provide an exceptionally high standard of education. Many private schools accept day students as well as those who board. Some private schools are aimed mostly at Swiss students, but many are very international; children of high-ranking or wealthy parents from all over the world (whether in business or government) are often sent to Switzerland to attend school. There are also foreign national schools.
Santa Fe offers Visa and Immigration services for Switzerland and countries around the world. For further information, please contact your local Santa Fe office.
Santa Fe Relocation Services Geneva Office
Address: Chemin Grenet 18, ZI De Mouillee Galand 1214 Geneve-Vernier
Contact Number: +41 22 939 1000
Manager: Mark Muss
Let us assist you with obtaining a Swiss visa, finding an apartment or school in Bern, and more!”
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