Around 13% of businesses have reported reduced confidence in investment, although at present investment and staff planning is only changing for a limited number of businesses, according to a survey by KOF on the implications of the success of the initiative against mass immigration.
At the same time, almost one half of the participating businesses fear that the medium-term growth prospects for the Swiss economy have worsened.
Participants in the survey fear the implications of the success of the initiative, in particular in relation to staff policy: almost 32% are expecting increases in the costs of staff recruitment. Until now, however, only relatively few firm shave changed their investment or staff planning for the current year.
The position is different for the coming years: around 6% of businesses state that they intend to reduce investment in 2015 as a result of the initiative. 8% of the participants in the survey expect to rein in their investments in 2016, and 7% from 2017 onwards. Only 2% of the businesses intend to invest more heavily in Switzerland. Overall, there has thus been a slightly negative impairment of investment planning.
As regards staff planning within the Swiss economy, answers likewise point to a slightly chilling trend. 7% of businesses state that they will follow a more restrained staff policy in 2015, whilst for 2016, 2017 and thereafter 9% state that they will do so. Between 2% and 3% of parti cipants plan to hire more staff.
Firms with reduced planning security and a high proportion of foreign workers are more skepticalFirms with a higher proportion of foreign employees will be more likely to reduce investment and to hire fewer staff than previously planned.
The survey also shows that reduced planning security and a more sceptical view of growth prospects tend to have an unfavourable effect on investment and staff planning. Around one half (49%) of businesses consider that the growth dynamic for the Swiss economy will be slowed due to the initiative’s success. Firms in the construction sector are more likely to be considering reductions in investments and employment than in the industrial or services sector.