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“Fifth Switzerland”

Swiss nationals living abroad are often referred to as the “Fifth Switzerland”.

This expression is based on the four language regions of Switzerland (German-speaking Switzerland, French-speaking Switzerland, Italian-speaking Switzerland and Rhaeto-Romanic Switzerland), with the Swiss nationals abroad representing another region.

Less frequently, the Swiss Abroad are also referred to as the 27th canton. The “Area of the Swiss Abroad”, for example, is the 27th station of the “Swiss Path” around Lake Uri, where every canton is represented by its own section.