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Indians more positive about migrants than other citizens: Study

Other nationalities believe immigration adversely affects their job opportunities,puts stress on public services.

Written by Agencies | New Delhi |
August 19, 2011 4:14:35 pm

A larger percentage of Indians consider an influx of immigrants into their country as positive than people of other nationalities,who feel immigration adversely affects their job opportunities and puts stress on public services,a survey has found.

According to a survey conducted by global research company Ipsos,nearly half (45 per cent) of global citizens surveyed believe “immigration has generally had a negative impact on their country”,compared to 21 per cent who believe the impact has been positive.

In addition,29 per cent of the global respondents were divided in their opinion of whether immigration was positive or negative,while the remaining 4 per cent of the people surveyed said they did not know.

In contrast,43 per cent of Indian respondents believe immigration has a positive impact on the country,as compared to 29 per cent that said it had negative impact.

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Notably,eight out of ten Indians believe that the amount of migrants in the the country has increased over the last five years.

This is comparable to the global scenario,where 80 per cent of people in the 23 countries polled believe that over the last five years,the amount of migrants to their country has increased.

Furthermore,52 per cent of all respondents believe there are too many immigrants in their country,with 48 per cent opining they have made it more difficult for their country’s people to get jobs,while 51 per cent said it puts too much pressure on a country’s public services.

The Ipsos poll of 17,601 adults also finds that those with the strongest opinion that immigration has generally been negative for their country were from Belgium (72 per cent),followed by South Africa (70 per cent),Russia (69 per cent),Great Britain (64 per cent),Turkey (57 per cent),the US (56 per cent),Italy (56 per cent) and Spain (55 per cent).

With regard to the countries where people believe immigration has generally had a positive impact,Indians (43 per cent) were the most optimistic,followed by Canada (39 per cent),Saudi Arabia (38 per cent),Sweden (37 per cent),Australia (31 per cent,Brazil (30 per cent) and Indonesia (30 per cent).

Globally,it would appear that education makes a big difference in terms of how citizens view the impact of migrants on their country. People with a higher level of education are significantly more likely to say that immigration has generally had a positive impact on their country (29 per cent) than those less educated (16 per cent).

The survey noted that people across the globe are not particularly laudatory when it comes to the perceived economic impact of immigrants on their own country: only 28 per cent agree that immigration is good for their economy compared with 39 per cent that disagree and 29 per cent who express neutrality on the issue.

The survey was conducted among 17,601 adults in 23 countries in June.

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