Swiss arms sales down by almost a fifth

Swiss arms exports accounted for 0.21% of total exports from the Swiss economy in 2021. © Keystone / Peter Klaunzer

Swiss companies exported CHF742.8 million ($801 million) worth of war materiel to 67 countries in 2021, down 18% on the previous year, the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) said on Friday.

This content was published on March 25, 2022 - 13:56

These arms exports accounted for 0.21% of total merchandise exports from Switzerland, according to SECOExternal link, which is responsible for granting arms export licences.

The five largest importers of Swiss war materiel were Germany (with deliveries worth CHF123.4 million), followed by Denmark (CHF96 million), the US (CHF90.2 million), Romania (CHF87.1 million) and Botswana (CHF63.5 million).

Saudi Arabia comes in sixth (deliveries worth CHF51.3 million). The list also includes the United Arab Emirates, which like Saudi Arabia is involved in the Yemen war.

The main transactions were wheeled armoured vehicles to Denmark (CHF94.6 million) and Romania (CHF86.9 million); various types of ammunition and ammunition components to Germany (CHF71.9 million); and wheeled armoured vehicles to Botswana (CHF63.5 million), says SECO.

Exports to Europe represented 65% of the total (62% in 2020), while Asia represented 10.9% (18.8%), Africa 9.6% (9.6%), the Americas 13.3% (8.5%) and Australia 1.2% (1.1%).

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