Made in Switzerland: Global demand for Swiss Cleantech solutions

The demand for “clean” products and services is growing, which opens up new opportunities for businesses and governments to invest. Switzerland is one of the top leaders in this emerging field, with strong exporting SMEs offering a wide range of innovative solutions. Innovative highlights are illustrated in the newly published 2017 edition of the Swiss Cleantech Report.

Made in Switzerland: Global demand for Swiss Cleantech solutions
Swiss cleantech solutions are sought after globally.

Switzerland has been a pioneer in environmental innovation for almost a century. Based on a desire to protect the ecosystem, Switzerland was the first European country to enact an environmental protection law. This pioneering spirit has helped forge Switzerland’s national identity, enabling our country to achieve outstanding performance in areas as diverse as the management and recycling of waste, public transport, energy efficiency and land management.

Switzerland is a cleantech nation

Cleantech is also a relevant factor for the Swiss economy. The number of jobs in the sector has grown by 25% over the last five years, which represents almost 5% of Switzerland’s GDP. Our country’s capacity for innovation and high-tech manufacturing further ensures that we lead the way with our transport networks, production of electricity from renewable sources, waste processing and recycling of materials, and energy efficiency. It is therefore not surprising that Switzerland has become a leading nation in patents for wastewater treatment technologies and waste management including recycling. The country ranks first in cleantech patents per capita, which illustrates that Switzerland is on the right track with increasing investments in clean technologies. "Switzerland is the proud home of a lot of cleantech world champions,” says David Avery, Head of Cleantech at Switzerland Global Enterprise (S-GE).

Global demand for Swiss cleantech solutions is growing

As a cross-sector market segment incorporating various technologies, production processes and services that contribute to the protection and preservation of natural resources, cleantech is seeing huge global demand. Thanks to Switzerland’s reputation for quality and innovativeness, the cleantech label offers sales opportunities for Swiss companies abroad. According to David Avery, Swiss clean technologies are particularly sought after in far destinations. Key markets are the United States, Canada and the Middle East. "Markets such as India, China, Brazil or South Africa are a bit more difficult to enter but because of their mere size, there is a lot of growing potential there as well," Avery continues. "Especially smart technology and constant innovation are key to remain competitive".

Swiss SMEs are innovation leaders

Pioneer projects, such as Solar Impulse, PlanetSolar and the world’s first energy self-sufficient residential complex, established in Brütten (Zurich), act as international ambassadors for Swiss values. The new edition of the Swiss Cleantech Report presents a wide range of technologies, products and projects developed by Swiss SMEs, scientific institutions and start-ups. It showcases the implementation of pioneering developments in water treatment, mobility, materials, reduction of CO2 emissions, photovoltaics, energy efficiency and smart grids. “Switzerland is ready to take innovation to higher levels,“ says Doris Leuthard, President of the Swiss Confederation, in the Report’s editorial.

Export Promotion Cleantech program: How exporting SMEs benefit

The S-GE cleantech program supports the Swiss cleantech export industry’s international position and assists exporting SMEs across different sectors with respect to the discovery and exploitation of growth opportunities in the cleantech market segment across the globe.

S-GE also offers information on export opportunities, consulting and network services, as well as assistance with participation in internationally relevant trade fairs (within the framework of SWISS pavilions) relating to the growth market of cleantech.

Promote your market activities at the Cleantech CUBE

The digital cleantech company database CUBE helps cleantech SMEs to promote their market activities in Switzerland and abroad (free registration).

About the Swiss Cleantech Report 2017

The Swiss Cleantech Report is a reference work for the cleantech sector in Switzerland. It is published by the Swiss Federal Office of Energy SFOE, the Swiss Federal Office for the Environment FOEN, the Swiss Federal Institute of Intellectual Property IPI, Switzerland Global Enterprise and CleantechAlps, with the support of various private and public sponsors.

It is available in English and can be obtained free of charge from CleantechAlps ( An electronic version is available at or via the interactive mobile app (Swiss Cleantech Report).

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