Swiss Boycott of American Products?

A while back, some good bloggers were discussing an apparent US consumer boycott of French products and travel to France. Of course what's good for the goose is good for the gander. But wait, it's not France taking it out on the US, but Switzerland, who sends 42% fewer tourists to the US than it did in the year 2000. But it's more than tourism:

While the total value of Swiss imports worldwide was virtually unchanged in 2003 at SFr122.4 billion, imports from the US fell by 17.3 per cent...

The [Swiss-American Chamber of Commerce] said the decline could partly be explained by the fact that Swiss consumers were turning away from US products in protest against some of the Bush administration�s policies.

Imports of wine fell by nine per cent in 2003, while the number of cars imported from the US declined by seven per cent. Both are what US officials call �emotional� consumer products.

But don't make too much of this though, because other factors--different recovery cycles, poor consumer confidence, and, OF COURSE, the exchange rate--explain the drop too:
[T]he US had recovered much faster than Europe after the global economic slowdown of 2000 and 2001.

[T]he economic impact of the war in Iraq was less pronounced in the US than it was in Europe....

The chamber's annual yearbook noted that it was �not surprising� that imports from the US had declined during 2003, as Swiss consumer confidence remained subdued.

�It has to be said that [trade] is falling back from an extremely high level. Over the past 30 years, trade has quadrupled and the business relationship between Switzerland and the US is [still] very healthy,� said Naville.

�Trade has retracted due to a weak dollar, which makes Swiss products in the US very expensive. But it's also due to weak demand in Switzerland, which has [found it difficult] to get out of recession over the last few years,� he added.


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This page contains a single entry by Kevin published on September 21, 2004 11:58 AM.

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