Fewer people are moving to Switzerland from elsewhere in Europe. Between January and September this year, immigration from European Union states was down by 26%, compared to the same period last year. (RTS/swissinfo.chexternal link)
For example, according to Swiss Public Television, RTS, 7,891 Portuguese arrived in Switzerland while 7,912 left, citing various reasons for their departure. Some said it was too expensive in Switzerland, they missed the sunshine, and that the economic situation was picking up in their homeland.
Michael Siegenthaler from the KOF Economic Institute external linkat the Federal Institute of Technology ETH Zurich says the fall in arrivals is due to Europe's economy growing quicker than Switzerland's. He adds: "If the trend continues, immigration in 2017 will be the lowest for more than ten years." However, KOF predicts that the Swiss gross domestic product (GDP) should rise 2.2% in 2018, compared to 0.8% this year, which could once again make the Alpine country more attractive for migrants.
According to the latest figures from the State Secretariat for Migration (SEM),external link there are now 2,047,684 foreigners living permanently in Switzerland. From January to September 2017, 67,039 foreigners arrived here from EU and EFTA states.