Immigration one-way street.


The Swiss People's Party (SVP) makes no secret of its hard-line stance on immigration and EU matters. It was the only political party to campaign for a "no" vote in February 2009's referendum on the EU-Swiss Bilateral II treaty--extending freedom to work and settle in Switzerland to include citizens of (mainly former-Eastern Bloc) new EU-member states. The SVP campaign failed--with 60 per cent of the population voting in favour of the treaty. However, had that referendum taken place today, the outcome may have been very different.

Attitudes towards EU immigration have since shifted radically, with calls for tighter restrictions now coming from some unlikely corners. Political ideologies and reasoning may differ, but the calls for limits can be heard across the political spectrum: for the Greens, current immigration levels are environmentally unsustainable; for the Social Democratic Party (SP), salary dumping among employers of EU citizens is a growing concern; even the liberal Free...

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