Foreign population

Anyone residing in Switzerland at a given time, but who does not have Swiss nationality is defined as a foreign national. The permanent foreign resident population is the reference population in population statistics. It includes all foreign nationals who hold a residence permit for a minimum duration of 12 months or who have resided in Switzerland for 12 months (Permit B/C/L/F or FDFA permit - international civil servants, diplomats and members of their family).

The majority of foreigners residing permanently in Switzerland are European and mainly come from EU/EFTA member states. Italian, German, Portuguese and French nationals comprise the majority of foreigners from an EU/EFTA member state, as well as of all foreigners residing permanently in Switzerland.

Permanent foreign resident population by nationality, at end of year, in thousands
  2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Total 1870.0 1937.4 1998.5 2048.7 2101.1
EU28/EFTA 1223.4 1276.9 1326.9 1361.6 1387.0

   Germany

284.2 292.3 298.0 300.7 303.5

   France

104.0 110.1 116.9 123.0 127.0

   Italy

291.8 298.9 306.4 311.7 316.5

   Austria

38.8 39.5 40.3 41.1 41.9

   Portugal

237.9 253.2 262.7 267.5 268.7

   Spain

69.4 75.3 79.6 82.3 83.3
Rest of Europe 368.4 369.9 371.4 371.6 372.0

   Serbia

98.7 90.7 78.1 71.3 68.8

   Montenegro

2.1 2.4 2.5 2.5 2.6

   Turkey

70.8 70.4 70.0 69.2 68.7
Africa 78.2 83.9 86.7 93.8 103.0
America 77.7 78.4 79.0 78.8 78.8
Asia 117.2 122.9 128.8 136.8 154.0
Oceania 4.1 4.1 4.2 4.2 4.2
Stateless, nationality unknown 1.1 1.2 1.5 1.8 2.2
Sources: FSO, STATPOP

Further information

Data

Contact

Federal Statistical Office Section Demography and Migration
Espace de l'Europe 10
CH-2010 Neuchâtel
Switzerland

Contact

Remark

Our English pages offer only a limited range of information on our statistical production. For our full range please consult our pages in French and German (top right hand screen).

https://www.bfs.admin.ch/content/bfs/en/home/statistics/population/migration-integration/foreign.html