The leader of the Swiss People’s Party (SVP), the largest right-wing in the parliament, accused of taking back control of immigration, echoing some of the arguments of politicians who supported Brexit on the eve of Brexit. .
Polls show that it will not be that successful. A poll by gfs.bern found that 63% of respondents opposed the SVP proposal, while 35% of supporters expressed their support, indicating that voters want stability during the coronavirus pandemic.
Nonetheless, the senior vice president appealed to those who believe that their culture may be threatened by immigration. By the middle of this century, the number of immigrants may increase from the current 8.6 million to 10 million.
The party said that as young foreigners replaced the older Swiss, housing became scarce and expensive, schools and traffic were congested, buildings swallowed up land, and jobs were in danger.
The organization’s campaign website said: “Immigration has changed our culture. Public squares, trains and streets have become more insecure. In addition, almost half of all beneficiaries are foreigners.”
Opponents warn that the plan will snatch the business of skilled workers, especially in the healthcare sector, or snatch pharmaceutical companies such as Roche and Novartis, as well as the torpedo agreement, which will increase Switzerland̵
Club official Ali Ozkan said that the influx of foreigners is evident in the football club Uster near Zurich, where children from immigrant families account for 60% of 13- and 14-year-old players and their parents emigrated from Turkey.
Of this 60%, one-fifth comes from the European Union and the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) countries.
He told Reuters: “Without immigrants, ordinary Swiss football-professional or amateur, youth or women-would not exist.” He quoted sources from the Balkans, Africa and the Middle East.
He said that European expats tend to prioritize the intellectual development of children and often plan to return home after staying in Switzerland.
From the beginning of free movement in 2002 to 2019, the population has increased by 1.3 million. Immigration contributes to 1 million people, of which about 750,000 are from the European Union.
EU citizens and EFTA members Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein accounted for 68% of the 2.1 million foreign residents in 2019. Italy, Germany and Portugal are the largest communities. More than 450,000 Swiss people live in the European Union.
Wealthy Switzerland is accustomed to absorbing foreigners attracted by high-paying jobs, including jobs that few Swiss want.
However, the senior vice president tried to impose some restrictions on actions, including the 2014 “Massive Immigration Initiative,” which approved the EU’s immigration quota, although to the frustration of the party, the Parliament was dissatisfied with it.
Voters decided to ban the new minaret in 2009, reflecting the suspicion of some Swiss towards the Muslim community, and the incident in which individual Muslim students refused to shake hands with female teachers caused indignation in the media.
If the referendum fails, the government will see a window to resolve its biggest foreign policy problem: the deadlocked EU treaty will mean Berne usually adopts single market rules, but it has been criticized by critics who say it violates Swiss sovereignty.