Persons aged 15 or over with dual citizenship represented 18% of the Swiss permanent resident population (967 000 people) in 2018. Within this population of dual nationals, 65% obtained Swiss nationality through naturalisation, whereas 35% acquired it at birth.
A breakdown by individual nationality shows that the most frequent second nationality among dual nationals is Italian (24%), followed by French (12%) and German (9%).
A majority of persons who, in addition to Swiss nationality, have one of the ten most frequent second nationalities, have obtained Swiss citizenship through naturalisation. This situation is particularly marked among Kosovars, Serbians and North Macedonians with dual citizenship. More than 90% of people within these populations obtained Swiss nationality through naturalisation. In contrast, for French, Italian or British dual nationals, the percentages of individuals who obtained Swiss nationality at birth and of those who obtained dual citizenship through naturalization are more similar. Swiss-French dual nationals are the only ones among whom more individuals obtained Swiss nationality at birth rather than through naturalisation (58% compared with 42%).
The distribution of the population with dual citizenship is not spread evenly among the cantons. At the national level, 18% of the Swiss permanent resident population aged 15 or over has a second nationality (in addition to Swiss nationality). This percentage is higher than 20% in the cantons of Zurich, Basel-Stadt, Ticino, Vaud and Neuchâtel. In Geneva, it reaches 46%. The cantons with the smallest proportion of dual nationals are Uri, Obwalden, Nidwalden and Appenzell I.Rh. where it does not exceed 10%.
Dual citizenship (also called dual nationality) is when a person has at least two different nationalities, if which one is Swiss nationality. People with Swiss nationality as well as that of another country (dual nationals) are considered as Swiss in the statistics. They may be Swiss by birth (born to one Swiss parent and one foreign national parent) or through naturalisation.