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Number of new Swiss citizens rises but where do they all live?

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Number of new Swiss citizens rises but where do they all live?
How many people become Swiss each year and where do they all live? Photo by Stephen Leonardi on Unsplash

Over 41,000 foreign nationals became Swiss citizens last year which reflected a jump on the previous year's figure. But where are all of Switzerland's new citizens based?


In 2022, 41,566 people living in Switzerland were granted Swiss citizenship, some 4,437 more than the previous year, new stats show.

Bern overtakes Geneva

According to data published by Switzerland’s State Secretariat for Migration, the canton that saw the highest number of newly naturalised Swiss citizens was unsurprisingly Zurich where over 10,600 were successfully granted citizenship. In second place was the canton of Vaud which saw 6,531 naturalisations.

The number of foreigners-turned-Swiss in the canton of Bern rose significantly in 2022, with 3,739 people getting the red passport. That's almost 1,600 more than the 2,184 people who became Swiss in Bern in 2021. Bern managed to overtake Geneva last year, which saw 3,119 foreigners become naturalised compared to 2,348 in 2021.


Switzerland’s canton with the smallest population, Appenzell Innerrhoden saw only two foreigners become Swiss last year, which was a substantial drop from the 19 in 2021.

Meanwhile, Basel-City handed out 1,526 Swiss passports last year compared to 1,275 in 2021.

Figures show where all Switzerland's newly naturalised citizens in 2022 are based. From

Where are Switzerland's new citizens originally from?

In terms of where these 41,566 newly naturalised citizens are from, most are from European countries.

Some 34,563 Europeans became Swiss nationals in 2022 compared to 30,801 in 2021.

Among them, German nationals lead the list with a total 8,997 becoming Swiss, which is around 1,000 more than in 2021. Last year, German migrants also made up the largest group of foreigners by nationality to move to Switzerland (23,300), with the majority settling in the canton of Zurich, followed by St. Gallen and Bern.

Italian nationals came in second with 4,666 naturalisations with another 17,961 Italians moving to Switzerland last year. Unsurprisingly, most of the new arrivals made the Italian-speaking canton of Ticino their base, followed by Zurich and Vaud, with the remainder spread out across the country.

Meanwhile, 3,666 French nationals were granted Swiss citizenship last year and another 17,301 French passport holders moved to Switzerland during 2022.

The French favoured the canton of Vaud, with nearly double the amount of people moving to the canton compared to neighbouring Geneva and Valais.


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