Switzerland and Peru have friendly relations, with regular political consultations. Peru is a priority country for Switzerland in the area of economic development cooperation.
Bilateral relations Switzerland–Peru
Key aspects of diplomatic relations
Political relations between Switzerland and Peru are strong and healthy. The intensification of bilateral trade, cultural and judicial cooperation, issues relating to human rights and business, and Switzerland's contribution to the promotion of economic development and to climate change adaptation are the thematic priorities of bilateral relations.
Switzerland and Peru have agreements in the areas of free trade, investment protection, double taxation, air transport, mutual legal assistance and the protection of cultural property.
Switzerland imported goods worth CHF 2.3 billion from Peru in 2018. Gold was by far the most traded item, accounting for more than 95% of imports. In 2018 Switzerland exported goods – primarily machinery, pharmaceutical products and watches – worth CHF 168 million to Peru. Swiss direct investments in Peru amounted to CHF 321 million at the end of 2017. Around 6,600 people are currently employed by Swiss companies in Peru.
Cooperation in education, research and innovation
Researchers from Peru can apply to the State Secretariat for Education Research and Innovation (SERI) for Swiss Government Excellence Scholarships.
Development cooperation and humanitarian aid
Peru has been one of SECO's priority countries for economic cooperation and development since 2009. The budget for the 2017–20 period is approximately CHF 70 million. Peru is also part of the SDC's Andean programme on climate change, natural disasters and sustainable water management. This programme is investing a total of some CHF 40 million in the Andean region during 2017–20.
Peru is a priority country for cooperation with the Federal Office of Culture. Switzerland and Peru have jointly financed several projects in the cultural field. For example, the Rietberg museum in Zurich exhibited artefacts from the Nasca civilisation from November 2017 to April 2018.
Swiss nationals in Peru
According to statistics on the Swiss abroad, there were 3,020 Swiss citizens living in Peru at the end of 2018.
History of bilateral relations
A Swiss consulate opened in Lima in 1884 and was upgraded to a consulate general in 1931. Diplomatic representation has existed since 1946. In 1964, Switzerland launched one of its first technical cooperation programmes in the Peruvian Andes. There has been a Swiss Chamber of Commerce in Peru since 1979. Following a severe economic crisis at the beginning of the 1990s, Switzerland cancelled Peru’s debt.