Over the 16 years from 2000, Switzerland’s population grew by 16% from 7.2 million to 8.3 million. The majority of this growth came from the foreign population, which grew by 46% from 1.4 million to 2.0 million.
The number of Swiss citizens grew by 521k to 6.3 million, a rise of 9% – buried in this number are naturalised foreigners. From 2000 to 2016, 640k people became Swiss.
Statistics from Switzerland’s Federal Statistical Office show which groups have grown the most. Mousing over the bar chart above reveals the numbers.
The greatest number of new arrivals were from EU and EFTA countries. In 2000, there were 875,000 people from these nations living in Switzerland. By 2016 there were 1,362,000, a 56% increase, or 1.6 times the number.
However, the fastest growth rate was seen in the number of residents from Africa. In 2000 there were 35k residents from the African continent. By 2016, there were 94k, 2.6 times the number. The next largest increase was people from Asia. In 2000 there were 67k, by 2016 there were 137k, slightly more than double.
Growth in residents from the Americas was also high. In 2000 there were 47k, by 2016 there were 79k, an increase of 1.7 times. The only group to shrink was Europeans from non-EU non-EFTA countries, which declined by 2%.
The years with the greatest net migration were 2008 and 2013. Since 2013 net migration has broadly fallen. In 2017, it was down to 53k1.
Those foreigners emigrating in 2016 (90k) were mainly EU-28/EFTA nationals (70%). Asians (12%), people from the Americas (7%) and nationals of other European countries (6%) were next. Germans (25%), Italians (14%), French (13%), Portuguese (12%), Spanish (6%) and British (6%) made up 76% of the EU-28/EFTA emigration total.