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Six percent of the population speak other languages.
Swiss currency The monetary unit of Switzerland is the Swiss frank/franc/franco.
Furthermore, with many United Nations (UN) and international organisations headquartered in Switzerland, there was a growing debate about whether Swiss neutrality was secured or enhanced by its refusal to join the UN.
The federal republic maintained its neutrality throughout the 20th century.
Swiss German is spoken by 65 percent of the population, French by 18 percent and Italian by 10 percent.
A fourth language, Romansh, is spoken by 1 percent of the population.
Many Swiss questioned the country's traditional 'bunker mentality' in a Europe at peace, with open borders.
Particularly troubling for Switzerland was an international debate during the 1990s about "dormant accounts" (assets left by foreign Jews in Swiss banks during the Nazi era but never returned), a controversy that challenged Switzerland's self-image.
As a prelude to full EU membership, Switzerland was to join the EEA (European Economic Area), but the citizens rejected the EEA in a referendum in December 1992.