Relations between Switzerland and Mexico are close and wide-ranging. The two countries are active at the multilateral level in particular, often adopting similar positions. Mexico is Switzerland's second largest trading partner in Latin America and there are substantial trade flows between the two countries.
Bilateral relations Switzerland–Mexico
Key aspects of diplomatic relations
Switzerland and Mexico have close and positive political ties. As a G20 state and an OECD member, Mexico is an important political and economic partner for Switzerland. The two countries have entered into agreements in a number of areas: air transport, double taxation, visas, investment and mutual legal assistance.
Switzerland and Mexico meet at regular intervals for consultations on political matters, trade, human rights and multilateral affairs. Switzerland and Mexico cooperate closely in particular in international forums.
The two countries work to address economic issues bilaterally as well as within the framework of the EFTA–Mexico free trade agreement, which is currently being amended. The Swiss embassy in Mexico is also responsible for diplomatic relations with Belize.
Switzerland and Mexico have committed to boosting trade under the free trade agreement. Switzerland is one of Mexico's largest foreign investors, with direct investments totalling CHF 5.4 billion in 2021. During that same year, over 47’623 people were working for Swiss companies in Mexico.
In 2022, Switzerland imported goods worth CHF 2 billion from Mexico, mainly precious metals, vehicles, and machinery. Swiss exports – worth CHF 1.6 billion – were comprised in large part of chemical and pharmaceutical products, machinery, and precision instruments, clocks and jewellery.
To promote trade, a Swiss Business Hub was opened in Mexico in May 2012 by Switzerland Global Enterprise (SGE) and a Swiss-Mexican chamber of commerce (SwissCham México) was established there in November 2016.
Cooperation in education, research and innovation
Switzerland and Mexico have been cooperating on vocational education and training since November 2016. The Mexican Ministry for Public Education and the State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation (SERI) have signed a letter of intent in furtherance of this objective.
Mexico is also a priority country for the Latin-American-Swiss Center (CLS-HSG), which is the leading house house responsible for coordinating activities in Latin America for the 2021–24 period.
Researchers who are citizens of Mexico can apply to SERI for Swiss Government Excellence Scholarships.
Peacebuilding and human security
Mexico and Switzerland cooperate in many areas at multilateral level (death penalty, women's rights, drugs, human rights). In addition, the Swiss embassy regularly oversees projects in the area of human rights.
Three agreements in the areas of culture and education entered into force in 2018: one on joint cinematographic production, another on the transfer of cultural goods, and the third on bi-cultural schools ('Colegios Suizos').
Swiss nationals in Mexico
At the end of 2022 there were 5,259 Swiss nationals living in Mexico. The Swiss embassy in Mexico City and the honorary consulates in Cancún, Guadalajara and Monterrey are responsible for administrative matters.
There are three Swiss schools in Mexico, located in Mexico City, Cuernavaca and Querétaro.
History of bilateral relations
The United Mexican States gained independence from Spain in 1821. In 1827, Switzerland opened an honorary consulate in Mexico City. Interactions between the two countries, primarily involving trade, began in the mid-1800s. In 1945, Switzerland opened a legation in Mexico, which was upgraded to an embassy in 1958. In 2020–21, subject to the COVID-19 restrictions, the Swiss embassy in Mexico organised a varied cultural programme to mark the 75th anniversary of bilateral relations.