Immigrants in Switzerland happy with life

A recent survey has found that the majority of immigrants living in Switzerland are happy with their life.

The survey, titled On the Move, is not due to be published in full until next year, but initial results were published in Swiss newspaper Blick last month. For the survey, 6,000 immigrants from 11 countries (from across Europe, North and South America, India and West Africa) were asked about how they felt about living in Switzerland.

The vast majority (90 per cent) said that they were either satisfied or very satisfied that they moved to the country.

A large proportion (approximately 70 per cent) of those questioned said they had moved to Switzerland to advance their careers and that they were in a better situation than they had been in their home country.

The figure was higher (75 per cent) for people from southern European countries such as Portugal, Italy and Spain, but less pronounced for British people and those from North and South America.

However, despite enjoying life in Switzerland, many immigrants admitted to still feeling a close attachment to their home country and many were unsure as to whether they would assume Swiss citizenship.

Two notable exceptions were the French and the South Americans, a majority of whom said they felt a stronger attachment to Switzerland than they did to their home country.

Immigrants from Portugal, Austria and Germany felt least attached to Switzerland, at 30 percent.

One of the survey’s researchers, Philippe Wanner, told Blick that the strength of feeling towards Switzerland depended on how the immigrant viewed their move. If migration is considered a professional opportunity, the feeling of connection to the adopted country is stronger.

This could, he says, explain why the French, who often come to Switzerland because they are dissatisfied with France, feel a strong attachment to their adopted country while the Portuguese, who usually come out of necessity, do not.

Just under half of those surveyed professed to wanting to become Swiss at some point in the future.

Article published 18th August 2017