Switzerland is a small country, around 41,000km2, with a population of 6.6 million. It borders Germany, France, Italy, Austria and Liechtenstein.

Switzerland is a fascinating country with a history like no other. It has been a neutral state since 1815 and is not part of the European Union.

It’s well known throughout the world for its chocolate – Nestle is its largest company; its watches – it has a 90% share in the world’s quality watch market; banks – with 1700 banks and 4500 branches; cheese; pocket knives; and pharmaceuticals – Ciba-Geigy, Hofmann-La Roche and Sandoz: in 1943 Andreas Hofmann, working for Sandoz, discovered and was the first man to take LSD.

The country is also known for its fascinating features, such as mines within the tunnels at all points of entry into the country - ready for explosion in case the country is ever invaded; the highly developed defence system; and the fact the country has enough food and raw materials stockpiled underneath the mountains to keep the population alive for many years if an invasion ever did take place.

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