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Most Swiss nationals emigrate to France

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The Swiss abroad community has recorded an above-average increase of nearly 3% and reached just under 775,000 members at the end of last year. Most of the expats live in Europe and have dual nationality.

Most Swiss abroad live in neighbouring France, with over 200,000 resident Swiss nationals, followed by Germany (nearly 90,000), the United States (around 80,000) and Italy (50,000), according to latest figures from the foreign ministry.

Canada (40,280), Britain (35,000), Spain (25,000), Australia (25,000) and Israel (19,500) are also among the top ten destinations in 2016.

The biggest increase in percentage for any one region was in Asia (up 4.3%).

There are also significant increases in the United Arab Emirates, Thailand, Lebanon and some countries in North Africa.

Growth rates in Europe varied from country to country, with Turkey and Portugal recording increases of 8.6% and 8.7% respectively.

More than half of the adult expats are women but the difference with adult men is diminishing.

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In terms of age groups, nearly three out of ten Swiss residents in Spain and four out of ten in Thailand are over the age of 65. In contrast, one in two Swiss expats in Israel is a minor.

The figures indicate that more Swiss nationals moved abroad than returned to Switzerland, according to the foreign ministry statement published on Wednesday.

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR