Swiss Confederation: Referendum, 27 November 2016
At stake in this election:
- This referendum includes 1 provision brought about by popular initiative.
Description of government structure:
- Chief of State: President Johann SCHNEIER-AMMANN (since 1 January 2016)
- Head of Government: President Johann SCHNEIER-AMMANN (since 1 January 2016)
- Assembly: Switzerland has a bicameral Federal Assembly (Bundesversammlung/Assemblee Federale/Assemblea Federale) consisting of the Council of States (Standerat/Conseil des Etats/Consiglio degli Stati) with 46 seats and the National Council (Nationalrat/Conseil National/Consiglio Nazionale) with 200 seats.
- Switzerland has two types of referendums, optional and mandatory. Optional referendums only require a simple majority of valid votes cast, while mandatory referendums require a double majority in valid votes cast and the majority of cantons.
About the referendum:
- The Federal Council has proposed a gradual withdrawal from the country’s nuclear energy program in which existing nuclear power stations, once decommissioned, will not be replaced by new ones.
- This initiative seeks to halt the program earlier, proposing to close three reactors in 2017, one in 2024, and the final reactor in 2029.
- The initiative also demands that the federal government direct its energy policy toward less consumption, more energy efficiency, and renewable energy sources.
Main provisions in the referendum:
- Popular initiative: “For an orderly withdrawal from the nuclear energy program (Nuclear Withdrawal Initiative)”
- Do you support the popular initiative “For an orderly withdrawal from the nuclear energy program (Nuclear Withdrawal Initiative)?”
Population and number of registered voters:
· Population: 8,179,294 (July 2016 est.)
· Registered Voters: 5,325,848 (2016)
· Female Population: 4,145,195 (July 2016 est.)
· Is Switzerland a signatory to CEDAW: Yes (23 January 1987)
· Has Switzerland ratified CEDAW: Yes (27 March 1997)
· Gender Quota: No
· Female candidates in this election: N/A
· Number of Female Parliamentarians: 73 (29.67%)
· Human Development Index Position: 3
· Social Institutions and Gender Index (SIGI) Categorization: N/A
· Is Switzerland a signatory to CRPD: N/A
· Has Switzerland ratified CRPD: Yes, Accession (15 April 2014)
· Population with a disability: 1,226,894 (est.)
 The position of President of the Swiss Confederation rotates on a yearly basis among the 7 federal councilors. Johann SCHNEIER-AMMANN, listed above, is the current president of the Swiss Confederation for 2016.
 There are 7 women serving in the Council of States (15.22%) and 63 in the National Council (32%).