Majority back new immigration curbs: poll

Majority back new immigration curbs: poll
Detail of poster for Ecopop proposal. Photo:
A majority of Swiss citizens support a proposal to limit annual net immigration to 0.2 percent of Switzerland’s population, a new survey indicates.

A poll showed 53 percent of those surveyed backed the so-called Ecopop proposal, designed to restrain population growth in Switzerland for environmental reasons by curbing the number of immigrants.

The online survey, conducted for 20 Minuten newspaper, found 42 percent of respondents said “yes” to the initiative, while 11 percent said they tended to support the bid.

Proponents of the Ecopop proposal argue that Switzerland is facing problems from urban sprawl, with immigration leading to unhealthy increases in density in major metropolitan areas.

The federal government and all major political parties have come out against the initiative, with Justice Minister Simonetta Sommaruga recently calling it “xenophobic” and harmful to the Swiss economy, whiich she said depends on immigrants.

Swiss citizens will decide on the issue in a national vote on November 30th.

The survey involved 13,397 respondents with the data weighted by political scientists to reflect demographic, geographic and political variables, 20 Minuten said.  

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