Voters in Switzerland have rejected a call for dramatic immigration cuts in the name of saving the environment.

They also rejected a bid to scrap tax breaks for rich foreigners and increase the country's gold reserves.

Results from a majority of the country's 26 cantons showed voters spurning the so-called Ecopop initiative, which called for cutting immigration to reduce urban pressure on the landscape.

Initial results nationwide showed 73% of voters said 'no' to Ecopop.

Meanwhile, 61.6% rejected the call to ditch tax breaks for wealthy foreign residents, and 76.8% turned down the bid to force the country's central bank to boost its gold reserves.

The measures proposed reflect a growing sense that Switzerland is under siege by foreign workers eroding its Alpine culture and trading partners who have insisted in recent years that the Swiss dismantle their business model based on banking secrecy.

The "Save our Swiss gold" initiative failed to secure a winning vote in a majority of Swiss cantons, the so-called "cantonal majority" required for the initiative to pass, according to data from Swiss broadcaster SRF. 

The measure, if passed, would have compelled the Swiss National Bank (SNB) to boost its gold reserves to 20% from around 8% currently, complicating policy at a time when the central bank is trying to defend a €1.20 cap on the Swiss franc imposed at the height of the euro crisis.

The central bank would have had to buy up gold as well as euros when intervening to weaken its currency, potentially casting doubt on the viability of its cap policy.

Switzerland's system of direct democracy gives citizens the right to force popular votes if they can gather enough signatures of support.