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Swiss remain divided over 5G rollout

The Swiss government is committed to the rapid expansion of a 5G network. © Keystone / Peter Klaunzer

Swiss opinion over the expansion of the 5G telecommunications network is still split down the middle, according to the latest survey on the subject.

The Swiss government is convinced that the new technology poses minimal health risks and is committed to the rapid erection of 7,500 5G antennae.

Some 42.5% of adults support this strategy, but 41.7% are against, suggests a survey of 1,023 people commissioned by price comparison website Comparis.

The divided nature of public opinion on this contentious subject is largely unchanged from a previous survey last yearExternal link by the Federal Institute of Technology ETH Zurich.

Opponents fear that radiation leaking from 5G antennae could cause widespread damage to health. But the environment ministry says its guidelines for operating the network will make it safeExternal link.

The Comparis survey reveals the same split along gender lines as last year. Half of women surveyed were against the rollout (compared to a third of men) whilst 30% supported the network expansion (55% of men).

Significantly more people over the age of 55 support 5G than the age group 36 to 55. Respondents with a higher level of education tended to be more optimistic about the new technology.

Opponents of 5G have so far failed to convince the wider population to back people’s initiatives calling for a halt to network expansion. Two initiatives were abandoned last year having failed to garner enough signatures to force nationwide votes.

Telecoms companies are also using the courts to challenge moratoria on 5G antennae imposed by some Swiss cantons.

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About Swissinfo
SWI – the international service of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Since 1999, has fulfilled the federal government’s mandate to distribute information about Switzerland internationally, supplementing the online offerings of the radio and television stations of the SBC. Today, the international service is directed above all at an international audience interested in Switzerland, as well as at Swiss citizens living abroad.
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