Skip to main content
Advertising

Originally published Wednesday, April 24, 2013 at 8:22 AM

  • Share:
           
  • Comments (0)
  • Print

Switzerland to restrict Western Europe immigration

The Swiss government said Wednesday it plans to restrict immigration from Western European countries starting next month, citing constant growth in the number of people coming to work in the prosperous non-European Union country.

The Associated Press

Most Popular Comments
Hide / Show comments
No comments have been posted to this article.
Start the conversation >

advertising

GENEVA —

The Swiss government said Wednesday it plans to restrict immigration from Western European countries starting next month, citing constant growth in the number of people coming to work in the prosperous non-European Union country.

Under a "safeguard clause" in Switzerland's agreements with the EU, the Alpine nation already imposes quotas on long-term residence permits for people from eight eastern European countries. The government said it expects to apply it starting for a one-year period starting in May to the other western and southern EU countries.

During this period, the country will issue a maximum of 2,180 long-term permits for migrants from the new EU member states and 53,700 for migrants from the `old' EU member states.

A government statement said in recent years the number of foreigners arriving in Switzerland to work has been up to 80,000 higher each year than the number leaving. Restricting permits "can help to make immigration more acceptable to society," the statement said.

Catherine Ashton, the EU's foreign policy chief, criticized Switzerland's new immigration regulations. "The measures disregard the great benefits that the free movement of persons brings to the citizens of both Switzerland and the EU," Ashton said in a statement.

News where, when and how you want it

Email Icon

The summer is wide open.

The summer is wide open.

Follow our three-part "Washington's National Parks" series running through August 10 for an in-depth look at some of our local treasures.

Advertising

Advertising


Advertising
The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►