Switzerland’s growth deficit: A real problem – but only half as bad as it looks

Ulrich Kohli, Alternate Member of the Governing Board

"Wachstumskonferenz", organised by Avenir Suisse, Zurich, 04.03.2005

The anaemic growth performance of Switzerland over the past quarter of a century is a cause for concern. To some extent, however, this poor performance is an optical illusion. The first part of the paper raises some measurement issues and shows that the index of real GDP underestimates the growth of real value added and real income in our country. A problem subsists nonetheless. The main causes of Switzerland’s growth deficit and possible remedies are reviewed in the second part of the paper.