Improving EU economy triggers plunge in emigration to Switzerland: report

Source: Xinhua| 2018-01-16 03:38:25|Editor: Lifang
Video PlayerClose

GENEVA, Jan. 15 (Xinhua) -- Fewer people migrated to Switzerland last year than at any point in the past ten years and the number of arrivals from the European Union plunged last year, the Swiss media reported Monday.

The number of European Union workers arriving in Switzerland halved last year from a peak in 2013 and net immigration from EU states stood at 30,799 in 2017, Swissinfo said, quoting the NZZ am Sonntag newspaper.

That number of EU arrivals was down from 60,957 fours years earlier.

The main reason cited for the decline in numbers is the improving economic situation in many EU countries, according to the State Secretariat for Migration.

Nevertheless, the conservative right Swiss People's Party says it will press on with plans to promote a new initiative to curb immigration.

People's Party chief Albert Rosti told the newspaper that a long-term average of 80,000 net immigrants from all countries is too high. Last year, net immigration from all countries stood at 53,200.

In 2014, Swiss voters backed a referendum by a wafer thin majority to curb immigrants, but the People's Party is unhappy with the compromise version of the vote that has actually been put into place.

Rather than place limits on immigrants, Swiss companies have been told to favor Swiss workers when filling positions.

The latest Swiss figures show that at the end of 2016, there were 2.03 million legally resident foreigners in Switzerland out of a total population of 8.37 million people.