Roughly 62 percent of voters rejected the proposal, which would have imposed restrictions on labor migration into Switzerland, the preliminary results showed. The Swiss People's Party tabled the motion, expressing a desire to take away the European Union's control over the country's migration laws.
At present, Switzerland is obliged to accept workers from EU countries, although a deal was struck with Brussels following a 2014 referendum that saw Swiss voters approve a proposal to establish quotas on the number of immigrants from the bloc. The agreement stated that Swiss companies had to prioritize individuals resident in Switzerland when choosing to hire new workers.
The country's voters, according to the preliminary results, have also supported a proposal to introduce two weeks of paid maternity leave for new fathers. Slightly more than 60 percent of voters appear to have backed this motion.
However, the preliminary results show that voters rejected a proposal to deduct general expenses for children from taxes.
While not a member of the European Union, Switzerland signed an agreement with the bloc in 1999 to allow people to move freely.