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Immigration to Switzerland falls as emigration rises

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09:24 CEST+02:00
Immigration in Switzerland has fallen considerably this year, according to official figures.

Around 106,500 people arrived in the country in the first nine months of the year, 6.9 percent fewer than the same period last year, according to figures released by the Swiss migration office (SEM) on Thursday.

In the same period, emigration rose by 4.7 percent, with some 58,000 people leaving the country from January to September.

Balancing those figures, the effective number of immigrants to the country in the first nine months of this year was 18.3 percent lower than last year, said the SEM.

Nevertheless, there are still more foreigners in Switzerland than ever.

In August the Swiss statistics office said the number of foreign residents in the country surpassed the two million mark in 2015, making up just under a quarter of the population.

On Thursday the SEM said 2,021,525 foreigners were living in Switzerland at the end of September 2016.

More than two-thirds (68.5 percent) are from EU or EFTA countries.

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