Silk road summit in China, the spring holiday in Basel. In the Chinese school “Han Tong” rolls a Bub happy on the ground: The Mandarin lesson. It is the main language of China and is the native language of nearly 900 million people, one of the most common in the world.

In the holiday time, Han Tong offers all day care for, including one hour of Mandarin in the afternoon. Today, four children characters, repeat. “It is very important that you write the dots and dashes in the right order,” explains Qin Xu Hauser, the proprietor of the school, “otherwise there will be a mess.”

“Switzerland has become China-friendly behavior”

The majority of the Swiss China is foreign, some even scary. However, the Chinese people love Switzerland. And we benefit from it. “Switzerland is probably the Western country with the closest ties to China,” says Patrick Ziltener, a Professor of sociology at the University of Zurich. The China expert has evaluated last year, scientifically, the impact of free trade agreements between the two countries. Alone, that the Confederation was able to conclude, shows their great importance. Neither the EU nor the US has managed to put such an agreement to negotiate. Switzerland already. Why?

“on the one Hand, Switzerland is of the Size of her is not a threat. On the other hand, it has made in dealing with China everything right,” says Ziltener. This means, among other things, that Bern 2015 decided to be a member of the Chinese-led Asian infrastructure investment Bank (AIIB). Or that she was in it from the beginning with the “Belt and Road”Initiative – the much-cited new silk road. And this week, Ueli Maurer took part at the invitation of the Chinese head of state Xi Jinping again a Silk road summit in Beijing. Ziltener: “Switzerland has always been China friendly.”

Massive balance of trade Surplus for Switzerland

to appreciate The knowledge of those in power in Beijing. And so you buy diligently for our expensive drugs, jewellery watches and precision machines. In 2017, the Switzerland of goods exported for almost 24 billion Swiss francs to China, while there are only Goods to the value of about 13 billion across the border. Result: a massive balance of trade Surplus for the high-wage country of Switzerland!

Quite different things are for the USA. Last year, China delivered for $ 43 billion more goods to the US than Vice versa. Donald Trump (72) brings this balance of trade deficit so in Rage that he was several times on the verge of an economic war with the middle Kingdom, and degradation.

Delicate topics are not

tensions between Switzerland and China at an official level raised, there was 20 years ago. In 1999, the then-President, Jiang Zemin, Bern visited. On the Federal square protesters, calling loudly for a free Tibet gathered. Jiang responded hässig, ignored the present government. Haarscharf Switzerland over skidded to a diplomatic row.

The Swiss diplomats have learned from it. Sensitive topics – such as the poor treatment of minorities, the catastrophic state of press freedom, or lack of democratic rights – not to speak at all. At least not in public. This brought Switzerland an excellent reputation in China. “Ruì shì” means “Switzerland” in Chinese. Literally Happy people is translated as:””. And many Chinese want to see this country in the Satisfied to 1.7 million for the Nights you gave last year, the Swiss hotel industry. In ten years, this value has grown to astronomical 450%. China is the fourth most important foreign market for Switzerland tourism is today.

conversely, export is of interest mostly for the people’s Republic and its 1.4 billion inhabitants. Around 500 inquiries from Swiss companies to China, the Organisation Switzerland Global Enterprise (SGE) answered each year. She advises on behalf of the Federation of the Swiss companies that want to in the foreign transactions.

free trade agreements as an advantage for Switzerland

“The potential of China is enormous. Even niche markets are huge,” says Daniel Bont, SGE-chief consultant for China. The Switzerland-thanks to the free trade agreement an advantage over competitors from the EU or America. The duties will decrease gradually over 15 years. This means that Each year, China is still a bit more attractive. Bont: “The incentive for the use of the free trade agreement is steadily increasing.”

the new silk road, China is even closer to Switzerland. “It is a project of superlatives,” says Christian Wurst, Europe-CEO of the Basel-based logistics company, Panalpina, has benefited enormously from Chinese investment in infrastructure. “A train from Europe to China needs today, about 14 to 17 days,” says sausage. If the new Compounds are, in declining the trip duration to three to four days. Thus, the rail will be transported cargo, a competition to the air, with the help of otherwise expensive goods.

geopolitics is in the Chinese school in Basel-Ring-headquarters far away. And yet: For Basel with its pharmaceutical giants, it is an advantage of location. If not just vacation time, learning for 80 children in 16 classes in Mandarin. “Chinese learning is easier for children. You do not ask so much,” says teacher Xu Hauser.
The four small language students in the classroom around, paint their hands and silly. Ensure you do not have to make. Who speaks in the new world, Chinese, has the future on his side.