Exports of chemical and pharmaceutical products slowed last year, reducing the industries' share of Swiss exports by nearly two per cent.
The Swiss Society of Chemical Industries in Zurich said on Friday that exports last year had risen by 5.6 per cent to reach SFr35.9 billion (21.76 billion).
In a statement, the Society said the slowdown meant that the share of the chemical and pharmaceutical industries in total Swiss exports had fallen to 26.4 per cent from 28.2 per cent in 1999.
It added that imports by the industries in 2000 reached SFr21.9 billion, an increase of 13.3 per cent over the previous year.
Exports to the European Union remained at practically the same level, recording a slight increase of 0.4 per cent. The EU market accounts for nearly 60 per cent of total branch exports, absorbing SFr20.6 billion worth of Swiss products.
Exports to Italy, Germany and France declined, while those to Britain and Spain rose.
Exports to Latin America rose 17.6 per cent, those to Asia 14.2 per cent, to Africa 12.2 per cent and to North America 11.7 per cent.
swissinfo with agencies