Bilateral relations Switzerland–Colombia

Relations between Colombia and Switzerland are close and wide-ranging, and are strengthened by regular political consultations and high-level meetings. Colombia is a priority country for Switzerland in economic cooperation, humanitarian aid and peacebuilding. Trade between the two countries is brisk.

Key aspects of diplomatic relations

Relations between Switzerland and Colombia are close, spanning a wide range of areas including the promotion of bilateral trade, humanitarian aid, peacebuilding, economic development, and cultural and multilateral cooperation.

Switzerland and Colombia have concluded agreements on investment protection, free trade, double taxation, mutual legal assistance, air transport, scientific cooperation and the protection of cultural property.

Treaty database

Government of Colombia (es)

Economic cooperation

In 2018, Switzerland imported CHF 462 million worth of goods from Colombia, mainly precious stones, precious metals and agricultural products. Swiss exports to Colombia – mainly pharmaceutical and chemical products, machinery and precision instruments – amounted to CHF 533 million. At the end of 2017, direct investment from Switzerland in Colombia amounted to just under CHF 1.2 billion, and Swiss companies employed about 12,100 people in the country.

Country information, State Secretariat for Economic Affairs SECO

Trade promotion, Switzerland Global Enterprise SGE

Swiss-Colombian Chamber of Commerce

Development cooperation and humanitarian aid

Since 2001, the Swiss Humanitarian Aid programme has focused on assisting and protecting the civilian population affected by the conflict. CHF 35 million has been budgeted for the years 2017 to 2020.

Since 2009, Colombia has been one of SECO's priority countries for economic cooperation and development. The objective is to strengthen the competitiveness of the Colombian economy and promote sustainable growth. The budget allocated for 2017–20 amounts to CHF 55 million.

Colombia is also a beneficiary of the SDC's programme for the Andean region, which focuses on climate change, natural disasters and the sustainable management of water resources.

Cultural exchanges

Switzerland's standing in Colombia has been enhanced by a number of cultural events, and by Colegio Helvetia, a Swiss school in Bogotá.

Colegio Helvetia de Bogotá (es)

Swiss nationals in Colombia

According to statistics on the Swiss Abroad, 2,420 Swiss nationals were living in Colombia at the end of 2018.

History of bilateral relations

Switzerland has maintained consular and diplomatic relations with Colombia since the end of the 19th century.  The Convention on Friendship, Establishment and Trade concluded in 1908 helped to improve the situation of the Swiss community in Colombia.  A Swiss consulate was opened in Bogotá in 1911. The consulate was upgraded to a legation in 1940 and an embassy in 1958.  The Swiss-Colombian Chamber of Commerce, founded in 1974, is based in Bogotá.

Colombia, Historical Dictionary of Switzerland (de, fr, it)

Diplomatic Documents of Switzerland, Dodis