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Exports begin to pick up again

Switzerland recorded a 3.3 per cent nominal increase in exports in February to SFr14.9 billion ($14.1 billion), with most branches recording higher figures.

The demand came in particular from Asia and North America in another sign that the country’s economy is recovering.

In a statement, the customs authorities said that exports were “feeling the effects of spring”, although it noted that in real terms – that means taking inflation into account – they went down by 0.9 per cent.

The value of watchmaking exports was up by 14.2 per cent, while the metal industry posted a 12.3 per cent rise compared with the previous month.

Imports were down by a nominal 0.9 per cent to SFr13.6 billion, leaving a trade surplus of SFr1.3 billion.

Government economists earlier this week revised their 2010 growth forecast for the Swiss economy upwards from 0.7 per cent to 1.4 per cent. and agencies

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